Elsa Gonzalez had never thought of herself as a community organizer.
But when Hurricane Dolly destroyed her family’s home in South Texas, she knew she had to do something to stand up for her family and her community. She joined a local grassroots organization, part of a network of 10 organizations that collaborate across issues of concern to low-income families in the region. Through her work with the Rio Grande Valley Equal Voice Network, she has blossomed into a powerful community leader who has helped ensure that public funding and jobs for disaster reconstruction go to low-income families.
Editor’s Note: This video is part of a special series about people participating in their communities and making positive contributions. The three videos in the series, as well as a discussion and facilitation guide, are available from Marguerite Casey Foundation. The videos are available in Spanish. Also, for Mother’s Day 2013, Equal Voice News featured 32 “Community Trailblazers” — women from around the country who are making positive grassroots change in their neighborhoods.