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Casa Maria is excited to have hired Gilberto to be a community organizer with Casa Maria.

He is a 2014 graduate of the University of Arizona with a B.A. in Mexican American Studies.


By Gilberto Contreras,

This will be my first post on this blog, so I would like to introduce myself to you all. My name is Gilberto Contreras Morales and I am not a stranger to Casa Maria de Guadalupe.

Before I speak about the work I have done with Casa Maria, I would like to give you all a little of my story. I am a first generation Gay Xican@ born into an immigrant family recently settled in Tucson, Arizona. I have lived in the southwest side of Tucson for the majority of my life.

Lynn Urquidez Elementary was just a walk away, and Pistor middle school was the puerta que mis padres nunca pudieron abrir. By that I mean, a school for the ‘academically advanced student’ that demonstrated the need for a more challenging curriculum.

My parents always described education as a human right, and they were ecstatic that their child was educationally gifted to be welcomed to an highly accredited school.

All the schools that I attended were public schools. In high school, my activist passion for quality education, was ignited. This is where I became affiliated with the Raza Studies Movement that happened in Tucson not too long ago. I became one of the many youth leaders that led the movement. Throughout my Undergraduate career at the University of Arizona, the topic that fueled me and kept me going was; the need for equal and quality education for all students of all colors.

This set my course to meetings, protests, and gatherings of all types of organizations. This is how I crossed paths with Casa Maria. They help the homeless by giving so much to them. They help students of the barrio by caring about the schools. They care about the families and youth that roam their streets. They care about the bus riders and giving them a voice.

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