Un Nuevo Mañana (A New Day) provides outreach and community education on topics related to sexual assault to underserved low-income, Hispanic residents in Hidalgo County Texas. In addition, Community Health Workers (CHWs) partner with local organizations to provide referrals, intervention, advocacy, accompaniment, support services, and related assistance to survivors of sexual assault. Un Nuevo Mañana also seeks to combat sexual assault and build a foundation of communal support for survivors by using CHWs to promote community awareness and action.
The program’s outreach activities are conducted inside or near some of Hidalgo County’s colonias, which are predominantly Latino and Hispanic neighborhoods. Members of these communities often lack access to reliable transportation, and conducting outreach inside of the colonias eliminates the need for residents to travel outside of their communities. Because Community Health Workers share a cultural background with the community in which they serve, they have a deep understanding of the cultural norms and beliefs that may prevent survivors of sexual assault from seeking services. This puts CHWs in the best position to dispel myths and misconceptions about sexual assault and provide assistance in accessing services. The relationship between a CHW and their community is essential in reaching the target population in a meaningful way.