University of Richmond will host “Pa’lante Puerto Rico,” an educational opportunity for the Richmond community to learn about the history of Puerto Rico and a fundraiser supporting Puerto Rican artists impacted by Hurricane Maria. The event is April 25 from 5:30-7 p.m. in the courtyard of the Carole Weinstein International Center.

The event will include Puerto Rico-inspired food, live music by salsa and Latin jazz band Proyecto Kameleon and salsa demonstrations by Ángel Rodríguez, director of Salsa Guy Richmond. The event will also feature the opening of a photography exhibition that documents Puerto Rico’s colonial past and the environmental destruction by Hurricane Maria created by local Puerto Rican photographers Tania Fernandez and Steven Casanova.

“It is important for our community to be aware of Puerto Rico’s current situation in a more historically and politically contextualized manner,” said Karina Vazquez, director of community based learning for the Department of Latin American, Latino and Iberian Studies. “This event is not only a fundraiser, but also a way to raise awareness of colonialism and its modern effects on Puerto Rico.”

A silent auction will feature books by Puerto Rican authors, photographs, paintings and gift certificates for local restaurants, yoga sessions and classes at the Latin Ballet of Virginia. All donations and silent auction proceeds will go to the Puerto Rican Artist Rescue Project, which aims to incentivize artistic practices and viability of artists’ lives after Hurricane Maria devastated the island.

The event, which is free and open to the public, is organized by the Inclusive and Engaged Learning and Teaching Spaces Faculty Learning Community and is the beginning of a longer endeavor to raise awareness and support recovery efforts in Puerto Rico.

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Director of Community-Based Learning
Intersections between Literary and Social Studies
Latin American XX/XXI Centuries Narrative
Experiential Learning
Visual Studies and Literary Theory