Welcome to another episode of Massachusetts Latino News Opinion+, where we talk about major issues the Latinx and underrepresented communities face.
This week we spoke with Vanessa Calderón-Rosado, CEO of Inquilinos Boricuas En Acción.
Inquilinos Boricuas En Acción or IBA was founded in 1968 by a group of Puerto Rican activists that fought for their rights to stay in the neighborhood of the South End in Boston. They basically stopped the city bulldozers, and the displacement threats that they faced when the city was planning to do a whole process of urban renewal in the South End.
This group of Puerto Rican activists created Inquilinos Boricuas En Acción to become the community development organization that would redevelop and revitalize the neighborhood and create secure affordable housing.
Almost 55 years later IBA continues the legacy of their founders by creating, developing, and reserving affordable housing in the South End and across Boston.
IBA also offers an assortment of programs to support young people such as bi-lingual preschool programs, financial empowerment initiatives, youth development projects, and arts programs. This assortment of programs combined with their work to secure affordable housing makes IBA a driving force in modern community development.
Coming up this Saturday July 16th, 2022 IBA’s Festival Betances returns to Plaza Betances here in Boston after a multi-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. They have a full day planned of exciting activities for everyone. This year’s theme is ¡De Bomba a Reggaetón! They’ll be celebrating and enjoying an assortment of bands and artists. There will also be plenty of food, arts and crafts, a parade, and their annual greased pole climbing competition. Vanessa shared that the competition is one of the most exciting parts of the festival, “People gather around that greased pole. Its so exciting to see the power, the grit, and the determination of these teams to keep climbing the pole until someone finally grabs the flag on top of it. It’s truly very exciting.”
IBA hopes that anyone and everyone in the Boston community will come out this Saturday and join them in celebrating the rich history and culture they have fostered right here in the city’s South End.
For more information about IBA, and The Festival Betances be sure to watch this weeks full episode of Massachusetts Latino News Opinion+.
https://ibaboston.org/ (IBA Main Website)
https://ibaboston.org/events/festival-betances (Festival Betances Info)