By From Staff Reports

LGBT chapter of Latino organization focused efforts in annual food drive on RCD, AIN food pantries

IN THE SPIRIT OF GIVING | LULAC 4871 Members Jesse Tafalla, Jr, Sean Lozano, Cass Callaway, Jesse Garcia and Felix Arrieta delivered food to the Resource Center Dallas Food Pantry.

LULAC 4871-The Dallas Rainbow Council delivered food boxes Saturday, Dec. 15, to local food pantries that benefits people with HIV/AIDS as part of "Cena En El Barrio" (Dinner in the Neighborhood), an annual food delivery project sponsored by North Texas LULAC District III, Tyson Foods and the North Texas Food Bank.

This is the fourth year in a row that the LULAC chapter founded by LGBT Latinos has participated, according to a spokesman for the group. Rainbow Council members joined fellow LULAC members from across the Metroplex early Saturday morning to assemble 2,500 boxes of food that contained frozen poultry, canned vegetables, cake mix, bags of rice and beans, sacks of potatoes and bottled water.

Seventeen LULAC councils from all over the Metroplex adopted families identified by churches, non-profits, shelters and community centers as being in need of food. LULAC 4871 contributed its allotted 150 boxes to the clients of

Resource Center Dallas Food Pantry and AIDS Interfaith Network Food Pantry.
Rainbow Council President Jesse Garcia said, "The League of United Latin American Citizens applauds the work that Resource Center Dallas Food Pantry and AIDS Interfaith Network do to help out people struggling with HIV/AIDS during these tough economic times. We realize that more Hispanics are using their services and our council felt it was right to select these agencies so they can provide a good meal to people who need enough nutrition in order for their medicines to work."

Garcia said members of LULAC 4871 spent Saturday afternoon filling up the freezers at both pantries. Because of Tyson Food’s contribution of more than 17,000 cornish game hens, each box contained at least seven hens.

"It was great to stock up the freezers at both locations with hundreds of frozen chickens," said Garcia. "Pantries are always in need of meat, poultry and fish — basic protein."

After all the 2,500 boxes were distributed at the end of the Cena project, some chicken was still available and LULAC 4871 members returned to pick up another 240 frozen chickens to deliver to Resource Center Dallas Food Pantry, plus 50 additional sacks of potatoes for AIDS Interfaith Network."AIDS Interfaith Network’s freezers were filled to capacity so we decided to give them the extra potatoes," said Garcia.

LULAC 4871 will close out its year with a Holiday Party Friday, Dec. 18, at 7 p.m., at the home of Jesse Garcia, where new members will be recruited.

"We’re looking for people who are ready to do community service, advocate for Hispanic issues, support LGBT equality and take a more active role on this planet," said Garcia.

The Rainbow Council’s next general meeting will be Jan. 26, at 6:30 p.m., at Hungdinger’s Restaurant, 4000 Cedar Springs Road, Suite E. Guest speakers will be attorneys from the Human Rights Initiative who will discuss asylum for LGBT immigrants who are victims of abuse.

Garcia said that in 2010, LULAC 4871 will concentrate on LGBT immigrant inclusion in Comprehensive Immigration Reform, promoting the 2010 Census, voter registration in Hispanic neighborhoods by pairing up with the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, fundraising for its annual collegiate scholarship and raising money for its Lifewalk Team.

For more information LULAC 4871 and the holiday party, go online to

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition December 18, 2009.
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