Andrea Ingle, Assistant Principal at Bluffton High who oversees English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), shared her knowledge of race, culture, and the contexts for multilingual learners with the LowCountry Alliance for Healthy Youth (LCAHY) Community Board Members via Zoom. As a former citizen of Venezuela and multilingual learner, she also shared her personal perspective. The purpose of the presentation was to provide LCAHY’s Community Board members with an understanding of the Latino/Hispanic cultures within our community that they can use when incorporating cultural competence into the coalition’s comprehensive prevention plan. In her presentation, she addressed how culture impacts one’s perception of health and one’s perception of substance use and abuse. She explained cultural differences in parental involvement, family structure, and cultural norms/perception of harm around youth substance use within the Latino/Hispanic cultures. She also addressed the impact of COVID on our Latino/Hispanic population and their reactions to the pandemic, including stress experienced during the pandemic. She suggested that LCAHY reach out to Latino/Hispanic families in Spanish during school events such as student orientation night and Multilingual Learners night. LCAHY plans to work with Ms. Ingle in the future to coordinate LCAHY’s involvement in school events. Conducting a cultural awareness training is part of LCAHY’s 12-Month Action plan.
Andrea Ingle, Assistant Principal Bluffton High