"31 Days for 31 Years" Opening Event Sat, April 28, 7:30am -Stop by Batey Urbano, 2620 W. Division and visit the prison cell 
Upcoming Events
To commemorate 31 years imprisonment for OLR
Batey Urbano and National Boricua Organizes
 "31 Days for 31 Years"


The National Boricua Human Rights Network (NBHRN), Batey Urbano and Latin@ Coalition are set to begin "31 Days for 31 Years" in which 31 activists and community residents will spend 24 hours each in a makeshift storefront cell with guard, for a total of 31 days. The exhibit, starting April 29th, also features an exhibition of Oscar's artwork (he is a prolific painter) as well as literature and posters from the campaign to free Puerto Rican political prisoners for the past 30 years and a wall of Oscar's letters to his supporters. There will also be a station where people may write to Oscar.


Ricardo Jiménez, former political prisoner in cell during 2010 exhibit.

The purpose of this exhibit is to call attention to the continued unjust incarceration of Oscar López Rivera. The ambitious joint effort of the Latin@ Coalition, Batey Urbano and NBHRN will culminate in a major event commemorating his arrest and 31 years of imprisonment on Tuesday, May 29. Oscar, a decorated Vietnam veteran, has been imprisoned since his arrest on May 29, 1981. Subsequently, he was charged and convicted for seditious conspiracy and minor arms charges and sentenced to 70 years. The other Puerto Rican political prisoners of his generation, arrested in 1980 and 1983 and also convicted of seditious conspiracy, were released in 1999 by President Clinton, due to mass international and domestic pressure. Oscar rejected the offer at that time because two others were not included. Both of them have since been freed on parole.

Activists, community members and other supporters will gather this Saturday April 28, 2012 at 7:30
am in front of Batey Urbano as the first "prisoner", activist and co-coordinator of the NBHRN, Alejandro Luis Molina enters the cell beginning the 31 day event. We will again gather at Batey Urbano for a press conference on May 29, 2012 at 5:30 pm.

For more information or to schedule an interview with a representative from one of the sponsoring organizations, please contact Laura Ruth Johnson (773) 505-2490 or laurarj@boricuahumanrights.org


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Puerto Rican Cultural Center (Over 30,000 pictures!)

Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos HS
(Over 13,000 pics!)

Johanny Vázquez New Poetry Book Release 


IPRAC is proud to host the first book- signing of Johany Vázquez Paz' new book of poetry, Querido Voyeur published by Ediciones Torremozas, Madrid, Spain.

Fri, May 11, 2012 at 6:00 PM
Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture (IPRAC)
3015 W. Division Street
Tras El Lente Book Presentation held at IPRAC


As part of the series "Un año de Martorell en Chicago," sponsored by IPRAC, Puerto Rico's monthly newspaper Claridad presented the book Claridad Tras El Lente, which includes 300 photographs from their archives providing an alternative look at Puerto Rican history in the last 50 years, on Thursday, April 18th.


The presentation of the book was led by a panel consisting of Rafael Emmanuelli, Board of Directors, Claridad, Jan Susler, Attorney, Elias Carmona, Photography, Vanesa Baerga, Mistress of Ceremonies and master Puerto Rican artist, Antonio Martorell.  Over 100 people were in attendance to hear the panel and engage in a brief question and answer period afterwards.


Luis Rosa to Speak at Opening Event
NBHRN Florida Chapter Formed 


The newly formed Orlando Chapter of the National Boricua Human Rights Network will be holding an official Press Conference open to the Public at which time we will present our platform on the release of Oscar López Rivera. NBHRN is a national organization, based in Chicago with chapters throughout the U.S. which defends Puerto Rican human rights in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

We are currently working with hundreds of churches, organizations, & political representatives for the release of Oscar López Rivera. The Press Conference will take place on Thursday, April 26, 2012 at 6:30pm at the Southeast Branch Library, 5575 S. Semoran Blvd, Orlando, FL. For more info, contact  Rosario Martínez, 407-486-4017 or rosariom@boricuahumanrights.org.


In Puerto Rico
Marathon for Oscar May 20th
Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico will be the site of the 2nd Annual 5K Marathon for the freedom of Oscar López Rivera. Over 75 runners participated last year. This year's 5K is sponsored by the Human Rights Committee of Puerto Rico and other student organizations.
Northeastern Illinois University
El Centro Campus
3119 N. Pulaski Road

Job Fair

Sat. April 28

Congratulations, Clemente LSC!


Congratulations to the Clemente Local School Council members on their recent election, held on April 19th.  The LSC is made up of parents, community residents and teachers and is the local decision-making body of the school.
Available at La Cosecha and IPRAC
"Don Oscar" Coffee, Paseo Boricua Edition 


Café Don Oscar can be purchased for $5.99 at:


La Cosecha: 2703 W. Division St. or IPRAC: 3015 W. Division St., 773-486-8345  


Puerto Rican Cultural Center
2739-41 W. Division St
Chicago, Illinois 60622
P 773-342-8023
F 773-342-6609
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Program News
Longest Student Run Publication in the Country
Que Ondee Sola Celebrates 40th Anniversary


Que Ondee Sola celebrated its 40th Anniversary on Friday, April 20th at the Alumni Hall of the NEIU campus. This momentous event makes Que Ondee Sola the only student publication of its kind throughout the United States to be in existence for 40 years.
President Sharon Hahs
The anniversary celebration was highlighted by a conversation between two Puerto Rican Masters, Antonio Martorell and Congressman Luis Gutiérrez, who himself was involved with Que Ondee Sola during his years as a student at NEIU. Several university officials were in attendance for the celebration. Among them was Carlos Azcoitia, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Sharon K. Hahs, President of NEIU, and Marvin García, Member of the Board of Trustees.
Board of Trustee Member Marvin García
View more pictures of the event at our Flickr site  here...
Jessie Fuentes, Nito Morales and Xavier Luis Burgos, principal event organizers
Principal event organizers from left to right: Jessie Fuentes, Juan Morales and Xavier Luis Burgos

PACHS Greenhouse Luncheon with Funders and Partners


On Friday April 20, the PRCC and Pedro Albizu Campos High School (PACHS) hosted a greenhouse brunch to celebrate the first year anniversary of the rooftop greenhouse atop PACHS. 34 funders and partners in the Urban Agriculture Initiative attended the event. Among the funders present included United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, LISC Chicago, CLOCC, the Bethany Fund, the Alternative Schools Network (ASN), Youth Connection Charter School (YCCS), and UIC Center of Excellence in the Elimination of Disparities (CEED). The participants were given an update on the accomplishments of the greenhouse initiative during its first year of operation. Participants reaffirmed their commitment to the work of PACHS and PRCC. State Representative Cynthia Soto, who was also in attendance, reiterated her continual support for the Urban Agriculture program, in general, and the edible garden to be created at IPRAC, in particular.


Team designs documentation software for non-profits
IPRO-PRCC Partnership Presentation at IIT

Members of the Illinois Institute of Technology's IPRO 312 team presented their document management system to judges at the school's semi-annual IPRO day, which took place April 20th. The presentation covered the background, development and implementation of a document management process that will make a large portion of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center's (PRCC) physical media available on the internet for public viewing.

The PRCC has been working with members of IPRO 312 throughout the year to produce the management system, and the result was presented in front of judges and the PRCC's Secretary of the Board of Directors, Alejandro Luis Molina.


Although work has been mostly completed on the current prototype, there is still work to be done.  We expect that a final result will be completed at the end of the year. However, after just four months of work, all parties are confident that another round of development will make an excellent product for the needs of the PRCC, and for other non-profits as well.


The poster below visually represents the work that IPRO 312, History in 3-D, has carried out during the Spring semester at IIT. IPRO 312 developed a procedure and system to digitize PRCC documents and make them available on the web.
Move for Life!
Season Kickoff Attracts Over 200 People 


On April 7, a crisp, sunny Saturday afternoon, Block-By-Block: The Greater Humboldt Park Community Diabetes Empowerment Center held the second annual Move for Life! Season Kick-off just outside of IPRAC. Many local and city-wide partners contributed to this festival of outdoor physical activity, which included bomba dancing, zumba,tai chi, yoga, running, belly dancing, salsa dancing, chi-gong, capoeira, small children's activities, and bike riding. Agencies also set up resource tables for participants to take advantage of local programming. DJ Wanda played music which drifted into the adjacent Humboldt Park (Park District) altering passersby of the event. Altogether over 200 adults and children attended.

The following partners helped to make Move for Life! a success: West Town Bikes, Rumble Arts, Consuelo Lee Corretjer Day Care, Miguel Barreto Union League Boys and Girls Club, Helping Her Live, Saints Mary and Elizabeth Medical Center, Block Club Federation, Bompleneras, the Chicago Park District, Association House of Chicago, AfriCaribe, Erie Family Health Center, Muévete, Laura Reibock, Evelyn Cato, La Voz del Paseo Boricua,  the Active Lifestyles Task Force of the Greater Humboldt Park Community of Wellness and Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago's Children among others.

Move for Life! commenced spring and summer activities offered by Block-By-Block: The Greater Humboldt Park Community Diabetes Empowerment Center's physical activity program Muévete including regular bicycle rides and walking in the East Humboldt Park/West Town area. For more information on Muévete, call 773-342-0855.

eChicago 2012 Closes with Challenge


During Friday and Saturday, April 20 & 21, the University of Illinois hosted eChicago, the premiere Midwest Conference on the challenges of the Internet, technology and community. This year's theme was "Planning for Change Based on High Speed Internet." Alejandro Luis Molina, the Secretary of the Board of Directors of the PRCC, spoke as part of the closing panel, summing up the social and technological disparities confronted by low-income and minority neighborhoods but also some of the advances made by the same with few material resources. Summing up the digital differences, he quoted Malcolm X, "Sitting at the table doesn't make you a diner, unless you eat some of what's on that plate. Being here in America doesn't make you an American. Being born here in America doesn't make you an American." The analogy implies, that without equitable access to the resources and training as other demographic sectors of the City (and the US) we can never hope to bridge the divide.

Frances Roehm, the Head Librarian for the Skokie Public Library, Peter Benton, the Director of the Benton Foundation and Drs. Kate Williams and Abdul Alkalimat of UIUC were also part of the closing panel. Molina and Roehm were asked to chair the organizing committee for eChicago 2013.

PRCC Licensed Childcare Serves 50 Children 15 mos to 6 yrs
Apply Now for Your Child!  


Centro Infantil Consuelo Lee Corretjer, the Puerto Rican Cultural Center childcare, is now fully licensed by the Illinois Department of Family Services to service 50 children, ages 15 months to 6 years. This increases the PRCC's capacity to serve more infant and toddlers in our community.


Founded in 1980, the Consuelo Lee Corretjer Day Care Center is a full day bilingual program offering quality childcare services for children 15 months to 5 years of age. The Center was founded in response to the need for bilingual-bicultural programs in the community. We place special emphasis on Puerto Rican, Mexican and Latin American culture. The program is designed to help ease the child's transition to elementary school and aims to provide services primarily to working and student's families.


We offer:
* Full day, Day Care for children 15 mos. to 3 yrs.
* Full day Head Start for children 3 to 5 years in collaboration with El Valor
* Research based curriculum
* Family involvement
* Nutritional Meals
* Parent workshops
* Action for Children
* Private slots are available
Required Forms and Documents:
* Admission application
* Statement of Earnings
* Child's current physical examination signed by physician
* Copy of child's birth certificate
* Copy of child's social security card
* Dental examination


For more info contact Xochitl Ramírez at: xochitlr@prcc-chgo.org  

Norberto González Claudio Bail Decision Delayed 


Puerto Rican political prisoner Norberto González Claudio, 66, went before U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas Smith in Hartford, CT for a bail hearing on Monday, April 23, 2012. Norberto is accused of participation in the Macheteros expropriation of 7.1 million dollars from the Wells-Fargo depot in 1983. After spending 25 years living under an assumed name, he was arrested last May.

Norberto's lawyer, public defender Richard Reeve said Gonzalez's appearance in court would be guaranteed if relatives are allowed to post more than $400,000 in real estate in Connecticut and Puerto Rico as security. Reeve also said it may be easier for Gonzalez to reach a plea bargain agreement that would avoid a trial if he is allowed to consult, outside the restrictions of a prison, with friends and relatives. Smith said he will consider all the arguments and deliver a decision on bail Tuesday or Wednesday.
In Puerto Rico
May 1st Organizations Demand Freedom for Oscar


Last week, the largest workers organizations in Puerto Rico, the Central Alianaza Laboral, Coordinadora Sindical and Central Puertorriqueña de Trabajadores, held a press conference to detail their joint plans for the celebration of May 1st, International Workers Day, honoring the recently deceased labor leader Pedro Grant Chacón and Puerto Rican political prisoner Oscar López Rivera. A resolution demanding the US government release Oscar López Rivera immediately will be divulged during the activity.