Local woman's mentor program helps Latino teens

Local woman's mentor program helps Latino teens

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by ANN SHERIDAN / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @SheridanWCNC

WCNC.com

DAVIDSON, N.C. -- She heard the statistics and said, ‘I can't accept that.' Nationwide, more than 40 percent of Latino teenage girls weren't graduating from high school.

And because she refused to sit back and do nothing, Rosie Molinary is making a difference. So much so, she’s getting national attention.

On Sunday, the Davidson mother was featured on MSNBC.  She was recognized as a Foot Soldier of the Week.

Molinary  founded  Circle de Luz, which means Circle of Light.  The national mentoring group aims to keep Latino girls in high school through graduation and beyond.

“What we say is education matters.  It will open your life up to more possibilities, and we want to help you see what your possibilities are,” said Molinary.

Right now there are 15 girls in Circle de Luz, and dozens of volunteers around the country.  Those volunteers each pledge $100 a year for six years.  

They can also be involved in mentoring and one-on-one support, but they don’t have to do all of that.  After high school, members of Circle de Luz receive scholarship money to get started on a post high school track or further education. 

Girls aren’t told what to do, only that they need to think of all the possibilities.  Circle de Luz volunteers even help the young women apply for other scholarships and aid.

“What that tells the girls is wow, there's a group of women who believed in me before they knew me they believed in me and I should believe in myself.  That's really powerful,” said Molinary.

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