Mariela Castrodaughter of Cuban President Raul Castro and president of the National Center for Sex Education (CENESEX)invited the Puerto Rican Cultural Center of Chicago (PRCC) to lead a delegation to Havana. The delegation will be in Cuba through May 15.
The goal is to create an ongoing transnational dialogue around HIV/AIDS transmission; the relationship between transmission rates and homophobia and transphobia; and the confrontation and eradication of homophobia and transphobia in Cuba as well as the Puerto Rican/Latino communities in the United States.
PRCC Chief Operations Officer Juan Calderon coordinated the effort on this side. He gathered 18 LGBT activists, community organizers, elected officials and business owners from New York, Massachusetts and Illinois.
The delegation members are:
Juan Calderon (Chicago); Melissa Mark Viverito, speaker of New York City Council (New York City); Nelson Roman, city councilor of Holyoke, Massachusetts; Dr. Roberto Sanabria, PRCC; Andreas Heuser, community activist (Chicago); Ricardo Jimenez, Vida/SIDA (Chicago); Dr. Gabriel Gomez, Chicago State University (Chicago); Daniel G. Harris, executive director of Illinois Network of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (Chicago); Liz Gardner, community activist (Chicago); Darren Horne, community activist (Chicago); Rick Garcia, member of the Illinois Committee of the United States Civil Rights Commission (Chicago); John Zmuda, senior partner at Foremost Strategy (Chicago); Janet Namer, Trans Latin@ Coalition (Chicago); Ronny Manuel Hernandez, Morgan Elementary School (Holyoke, Massachusetts); Veronica Tirado, PRCC; Lee Vaasjo, research assistant, University of Chicago; Dr. Karriem Watson, University of Illinois at Chicago; and Shawn Prem Malhotra, business owner (Chicago).