These are the stories that inspired Circle de Luz


Asheville  All in admissions lounge

This is the hard news: 
 Forty-one percent of Latinas do not graduate with their class in four years.                                                   

 A third of Latinas who dropped out cited marriage or pregnancy as the reason.                                          

 Fifty-three of Latinas will become pregnant at least once before the age of 20.                                         

 Adolescent girls who had a serious school failure- like dropping out- are significantly more likely to suffer a severe bout of depression.  In fact, thirty-three percent of girls who drop out later become depressed.  Researchers believe this might be because girls more acutely suffer the worst consequences after dropping out like higher poverty levels, higher dependence on public assistance, and lower rates of job stability.                                                                                                                                                        

– Latinas between the ages of 12-17 are more likely to attempt to take their life than any other group.  Twenty-five percent say they have thought about it.  Fifteen percent have attempted suicide.  

 Dropouts have an average annual income of $22,000. High school graduates will earn an additional $300,000 over the course of their career. College graduates will earn $2.1million in a lifetime.

This is the good news:

– Girls with long-term plans or educational aspirations have more hope for the future, are less likely to get pregnant, and become more engaged in school and related activities—all factors making it more likely that they will graduate from high school and make it to college.

– Research has shown that a relationship with a caring adult helps students stay in school and graduate.

We want to invite you to be part of that good news.

Launched in 2008, Circle de Luz radically empowers young Latinas by supporting their transformation through extensive mentoring, holistic programming and scholarship funds for further education.  Circle de Luz not only gives girls the financial means to pursue an educational program of their choice after high school graduation, it also provides the girls with six years of dynamic programming and mentoring.

Born of a common commitment to leveling the field for under-resourced Latinas, Circle de Luz began with a small group of volunteers in 2008. Five years later we have three active classes and will be adding a fourth this fall. We begin working with our girls in seventh grade and continue through their graduation from high school. We coordinate approximately 50 meaningful programs per year for our members. We have grown from an all-volunteer working board, to a professionally staffed program and have received funding support from, among others, Social Venture Partners, the Arts and Science Council, Wells Fargo, Hispanics in Philanthropy, the Charlotte Mecklenburg Community Foundation and Target.

See our 501(c)(3) designation here.


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