KMSB "Fox-11 Forum," Sunday, 3/20/11, 7:30 AM

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By Bryce Potter By Bryce Potter

Host Bob Lee interviews Tillie Arvizu, Vice-President for Southeast Arizona, and Laura Luna Bellucci, Prevention Services Coordinator, Chicanos Por La Causa, a community-based organization that is recognized locally, nationally and internationally as a model for responsive, integrated human and economic development. 

Arvizu says CPLC was organized in 1969 by a group of young Chicano leaders as a way of providing greater social and economic opportunities to those in their community. She says it was at first  an advocacy group, and then expanded its activities and in 1975, became a Community Development Corporation providing a variety of community services. She says in order to better serve the southern region of Arizona, CPLC opened its Tucson office in 1980.

Bellucci saiys the CPLC Youth Center, at 250 N. Silverbell, is a resource facility for inner-city youth.  She says computers are available on site for the youth to assist them in completing school class work and projects. She says the computer lab is also provided with internet services to further help youth with their studies. In addition, Bellucci says the Youth Drop-In Center provides activities that emphasize cultural and community awareness. 

Arvizu says CPLC operates two charter schools in Tucson and also provides a comprehensive array of housing services in Pima, Santa Cruz, and Maricopa counties. She says in Pima County the focus is on post purchase  programs that  include mortgage default/rental delinquency counseling and emergency financial assistance.  Post-purchase services are also offered.  She says in Santa Cruz County, a “sweat-equity” homebuilding program is in place where-by prospective owners assist in the building of their houses, much like Habitat For Humanity.