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CAMPBELL Hispanic agency to mark ceremony



Published: Sun, May 20, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



The rite of passage for teen-age girls is celebrated in other Hispanic countries.

CAMPBELL -- OCCHA will celebrate Quinceanera on June 3 with a dinner at Archangel Michael Hall, 401 12th St., from 5 to 10 p.m. Keynote speaker is Dr. Hilda Mateo of Forum Health's pediatric department.

The Quinceanera is a rite of passage for Hispanic teen-age girls coming of age. The girls must complete four weeks of four-hour sessions focusing on health, teen issues, etiquette, culture, citizenship and one session with their parents where the girls can express their concerns as they face adulthood.

After completion of the sessions, the girls are presented to the family and community.

They are asked to participate in an evening celebration in a decorated hall, music and procession. The girls and their families will tell the community what it means to be a quinceanera (princess for the day), their hopes for the future and how they will promote this rite to others. This custom is celebrated in Hispanic countries.

Changing lives: The ceremony helps teen-age girls increase in self-esteem, communication with their parents and their peers, and lays a foundation for them to become productive adults, says Mary Isa Garayua, executive director of the Organizacion Civica y Cultural Hispana Americana, the area's primary Hispanic social service agency.

The girls are Jessica Alverio, Misty Rose Cruz, Cathy Gonzalez, Lisette LaSalle, Christina Rivera, Jesenia Rodriguez, Jasmine Torres and Jennifer Torres.

The program is funded in part by OCCHA's Hispanic Heritage Committee, Ohio Arts Council, PASSPORT, and Mahoning County Family First Council.

Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $4 students (5-17 years old). Music is by DJ Eddie.

XFor more information, call Garayua at OCCHA (330) 744-1808.




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