ECC’s mission statement is “Empowering Northwood day laborers and families to thrive.”
It is ECC’s vision to see that residents in the Northwood area and all of West Palm Beach appreciate their Latino neighbors and the role they play in the community and that the day laborers and their families, in particular, feel safe, welcome, and able to access the resources they need to live healthy, happy and productive lives. These resources include nutrition and health care, affordable housing, legal services, workforce training, English as a second language education, and support services provided by the ECC for the day laborers (not all of whom are Latino) seeking to link up with employers wanting to hire day labor help.
ECC values empowerment, freedom of choice, financial independence, self-worth, and the ability to dream and pursue one’s own highest potential. In addition, ECC values equality for people of all races, denominations, sexes and sexual preferences, ages, and income levels. In support of this value, ECC’s services and programs are open to all in the Northwood area who desire assistance.
In the Northwood area, an “open-air labor market” began to develop next to Broadway and 44th Street several years ago. Up to a hundred day laborers, primarily Mayan immigrants from Guatemala and Southern Mexico, congregate daily in an unorganized outdoor labor market where employers pick them up for work.
A group of concerned citizens got together to address the problem in early 2019, and Esperanza Community Center was formed. It is our goal to transform the problem of an unsafe and contentious open-air day-labor market into a safe day labor center and to provide support services to the laborers and their families as well as other community residents in need.