COLOR is a community-rooted organization that works to enable Latinx individuals and their families to lead safe, healthy, and self-determined lives.
COLOR was founded in April 1998 by Latinas searching for strategies to overcome high rates of unintended pregnancy, increasing rates of HIV/AIDS, and other issues impacting the Latinx community in the areas of education, health care, civil rights, economic justice, and immigration. 20 years later, COLOR is a sisterhood of Latinas dedicated to building a movement of Latinas, their families and allies through leadership development, organizing and advocacy to create opportunity and achieve reproductive justice. COLOR works to empower Latinx individuals and families across Colorado to create the type of policy and system change that allows our communities to lead healthy, self-determined lives.
COLOR programs advance the organization's priorities in the areas of leadership development, organizing, framing, and advocacy:
• Latinas of Vision (LOV): comprehensive sexuality education programming for middle- and high-school youth. We work with our partners at Grant Beacon Middle School and reach nearly 60 youth in the academic year.
• Latinas Increasing Political Strength (LIPS): political education and youth leadership development for Latinas ages 16-21. Includes mentorship and a trip to Washington D.C. to meet with federal legislators and advocate for policies impacting Latinxs individuals and families in Colorado. We train up to 12 young Latinas per cohort and run the program every Spring and pending funding availability we also run it in the Fall.
• COLORado #1in3 Youth Council: student activists, ages 18-26, engage peers and the broader community in discussing abortion and challenging stigma through artivism and story collection. We engage 5-7 council members and collect 7-10 abortion narratives.
• Cafecitos and Parent & Family Workshops: organizing model for an adult audience, ages 35-55+, to inform and mobilize Latinx parents, largely Spanish-speaking, immigrant women, on reproductive justice issues. We deliver programming at seven sites and work closely with parent liaisons at six elementary schools and one middle school, reaching over 65 parents annually.
• Latino/a Advocacy Day: a two-day experience where over 200 Coloradans, largely youth of COLOR and immigrant folks, gather to learn, train, and
advocate with state legislators across issues of immigration justice, environmental justice, economic justice, and reproductive justice. In 2017, we coconvened this annual program with our partners from Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, CLLARO, Mi Familia Vota Education Fund, and Protegete - a program of Conservation Colorado.
"I have to be truthful, when I joined LIPS five years ago, I didn't really know anything about politics, reproductive justice or even about being a Latina. See, I come from a small town called Fort Lupton and in high school I never identified as Latina; I just kind of went with the flow and kept quiet. I think LIPS was the start of my journey. After attending Washington, D.C., I came back with stars in my eyes! [LIPS] showed me that it is so important to be proud of where you come from and to fight for, not only your rights, but the rights of nuestra gente." Abi Ocampo, LIPS graduate, Class of 2013
Abi is a CU Boulder graduate, Community Organizer at ELPASO (Engaged Latino Parents Advancing Student Outcomes), LIPS mentor and abortion de-stigmatization volunteer.
"When I started attending the cafecitos, I was very quiet and reserved. My self-esteem was very low. I am so grateful for what I've learned. I am more tolerant with my children, have better communication with my spouse, and can talk more openly with my 14-yearold daughter about sex and sexuality, without feeling embarrassed. She is confident about asking me questions and I can answer them with what I have learned with [Parent Organizer] Gina." Maribel Anguiano, Cafecito participant