Semillitas – Little Seeds Program Helps Children Learn and Grow

Photo credit Nuestra Gente

Semillitas, which means “little seeds” in Spanish, is a youth program established by Nuestra Gente to help plant the seeds of knowledge and nurture the development of children who are eager to grow and learn.

With programs for children ages 5 to 12, the Semillitas – Little Seeds program consists of three two-hour sessions per week. The bilingual Semillitas program is focused on the historically underrepresented Hispanic community in Lucas County, but it is open to all children. The free programs are offered year-round at Nuestra Gente in Toledo. Approximately 45 children are participating in the summer programs and the after-school programming typically serves more than 70 children.

Birthday parties are also held throughout the year to celebrate and recognize the children involved in the program.

“Our Semillitas – Little Seeds programs are focused on many different areas of development. Two of the sessions are expansions of existing Nuestra Gente programs that focus on physical health, artistic and cultural expression, and community building and empathy,” shared Linda Parra, founder of Nuestra Gente Community Projects, Inc. “The third session is a new program focusing on bilingual academic instruction. As always, our programs are offered in both Spanish and English and are open to all.”

Children involved in the Semillitas programs will have an opportunity to be involved in tutoring, art classes, soccer and more. Throughout the summer, the Semillitas program also includes organized camps and trips to the zoo, local parks, and camping opportunities! Birthday parties are also held throughout the year to celebrate and recognize the children involved in the program.

Program Accessibility a Key to Success


Kids playing
The Nuestra Gente soccer program is popular with kids of all ages!

The Semillitas – Little Seeds program helps build on Nuestra Gente’s mission of breaking down cultural barriers and helping families find safe, age-appropriate programming. By offering programs in both English and Spanish and providing free transportation, Nuestra Gente has helped to make the Semillitas programs even more accessible to children.

“Our bilingual programs are accessible to kids from diverse communities despite pre-existing language barriers. Filling the gaps in bilingual programming is one of Nuestra Gente’s defining missions,” Linda added. “We have also helped to overcome transportation barriers by picking up and dropping off kids as needed and offering programs in centralized locations with access to public transportation.”

Kids posing for a photo
Nuestra Gente is located at 1411 Broadway Street in Toledo. Their summer and after-school programs are free and open to all!

About Nuestra Gente

Established in 2008, Nuestra Gente Community Projects, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that serves low-income individuals and families in the Old South End and surrounding communities. Their primary mission is to build a healthier, more vibrant South Toledo, and to serve the city’s Spanish-speaking residents.

For the past 15 years, Nuestra Gente has offered a variety of social services to the Latino community.

Kids studying
Nuestra Gente programs focus on physical health, artistic and cultural expression, and community building and empathy.

“We are always looking to fill many gaps that have existed in our community. We’ve covered everything from language barriers, transportation issues, an art festival, a bilingual food pantry to putting a 24-hour radio station on the air in Spanish, the first and only in Toledo and Northwest Ohio,” Linda added. “We have focused on community building and promoting and sharing Latino culture and artistic expression. We’ve always worked to bring communities together and give a voice to the voiceless.”

Learn More

Nuestra Gente is located at 1411 Broadway St. in Toledo. They have developed a fun video on their Youtube channel to help families learn more about the Semillitas – Little Seeds program.

To learn more about the Semillitas Program or to register your child visit or call 419-283-0581. You can also follow Nuestra Gente on Facebook to stay connected and learn more about upcoming programs and community events!

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