Grant Highlights: Healthy Neighborhoods

Cinco de Mayo is a very important holiday for Sonoma County’s fast- growing Latino population. After four years of rock throwing, broken glass and angry exchanges between groups and police, the community decided to take back their holiday. a committee- advised fund was created by Santa Rosa’s Roseland area businesses and individuals with a goal to create a positive, family-friendly celebration.

On Cinco de Mayo 2006, thousands gathered at Roseland Shopping Center for a very different kind of day. All ages enjoyed traditional food, music and fun created from an extraordinary effort by the entire community. The alcohol-free event was energetic, enthusiastic, cooperative and rang with pride—a lesson in what a neighborhood can accomplish.

Sustainability in Action: when people work together, difficult situations can be turned around. Rene Meza, chair of Cinco de Mayo 2006, says it best: “It is comforting to have the support of the City of Santa Rosa, County of Sonoma, law enforcement and community leaders … and to turn to the Community Foundation Sonoma County for guidance and expertise.”

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