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  • Informational Newsletter: January-April 2024

    Highlights from the most memorable outcomes during the period of January-April 2024 Through the Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health, we have transformed nearly 500 students, teachers, social workers, directors, and parents; coming from 19 public schools and homeschooling groups from 12 towns in Puerto Rico. Our art galleries have opened free of charge three three times per week. We have received 4,000 visitors from 17 towns in Puerto Rico, 16 countries, 31 states of the United States of America, and four continents, all whom have appreciated the exhibit: "Ojos Que Tienen Vista: Mirar Más Allá / Eyes That Have Sight: To Look Beyond" curated by internationally renowned independent writer and Latin American and Caribbean art historian, Gerardo Mosquera. Alumni of the Educa Cortés Program: Jade Rosario, Gala Camacho and Daniel Coss have joined the Fundación Cortés team as employees in their role as Educational Guides. They provide personalized tours of the exhibition to enrich the visitor experience. To support their efforts and the Educa Cortés Program, you can donate to the Professional Development Fund for our Educational Guides by entering into our donation page on PayPal. Successful First Fundraising Banquet Sunday, January 28, 2024, the Fundación Cortés held its first fundraising event at Hacienda Don Carmelo in Vega Baja. The event was called "Un Banquete de Aquí: Arte, Música y Gastronomía" featuring promotional art inspired by the work of Puerto Rican artist Nick Quijano titled "El sabor lo dice todo". It was a tropical afternoon, with all the vibrant elements of Puerto Rican culture reflected in the cuisine, music, and art. The event design company Akua did an extraordinary job with the venue's decoration, which looked spectacular, with an attendance of over 300 people. We had the participation of 8 chefs under the coordination of Chef Augusto Schreiner, including Chef Marisoll Hernández, Chef Lorraine Colón, Chef Enrique Piñeiro, Chef Juan José Cuevas, Chef Manuel Massa, Chef Ricardo de Obaldía, and Chef Manolo Martínez. Thank you to the sponsors of this event: • Foundation for Poverty/Child Poverty • Compañía de Turismo de Puerto Rico • Cortés Hermanos • Suiza Dairy • Hacienda Don Carmelo • Reinhold • Banco Popular de Puerto Rico • Universidad Ana G. Méndez • London Consulting Group • Goya • Hotel Condado Palm Inn • Supermax • B. Fernández • Fiji • Justin Vineyard • Landmark Vineyard • Don Q • Gustos Coffee • GFR Media • El Vocero • Plaza Cellars • Danosa • Mendoza Law Office • Droguería Betances • Sajo/McCann • Caribbean Cinemas • V. Suárez • Bravada Puerto Rican actress, Cordelia González, was the master of ceremonies who guided the guests through a very special evening where we celebrated and supported Fundación Cortés in continuing its philanthropic work. The musical compositions were directed by Maestro Cucco Peña, and each song was accompanied by dancers who showcased dance styles across various genres as they took a musical journey through Puerto Rico's musical history of the last 100-150 years. Cucco Peña's orchestra was accompanied by extraordinary local talents such as Hilda Ramos, José Nogueras, Nahyra, Karla Marie, and Gerardito. We held a live art auction with 20 emerging contemporary Caribbean artists: Javier Orfón, Natalia Sánchez Cruz, Eduardo Cabrer, Lilliam Nieves, Alejandro Saki Sacarello, Efrén Candelaria, Aby Ruiz, Bobby Cruz, Yiyo Tirado-Rivera, Jotham Malavé, Rafael Miranda, Rogelio Báez, Nelson Nel Figueroa, Kivan Quiñones, Admin Torres, Ángel Borroto, Pedro Vélez, Omar Velázquez, Stencil Network (Juan Gutierrez), and Manuel Mendoza Sánchez. In addition, a silent auction was held for a set of 18K gold earrings by designer Mary Esses, and a bottle of Reserva de la Familia Serrallés aged in barrels for 20 years. On the premises of the Hacienda, there were different food stations, seating areas, a "pica" for enjoyment, and various stations with chocolate, juices, sodas, drinks, coffee, and dessert. The event was a resounding success. Save the date for the second edition of the event, "Un Banquete De Aquí II: El Colmo De Lo Exquisito" which will be on Saturday, February 8, 2025. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health We have developed and implemented more than 10 new cultural and academic enrichment curricula with reading integration to contribute to eliminating the crisis in reading comprehension. Through these workshops, we have complemented academic standards in the following subjects: English, science, poetry, history, mathematics, Spanish, culinary arts, commerce, cosmetology, finance, mechanics, medical billing, and office administration. Additionally, other focus topics included corporate social responsibility, non-violent communication, and emotional management. We strengthened the program with the continuous appearance of our character, Lector Guatíbiri. During the workshops, Lector Guatíbiri reads books, phrases by Eugenio María de Hostos, recites poetry, trills and promotes the writing of short-format stories among the participants. PITIIIRRRE! Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: ¿Qué-TAL? This year, we launched Tardes de Lectura, Valores y Chocolate. During this afternoon programming, we provide a comfortable environment within our gallery with beanbags, a collection of books, and art materials for participants. Visitors are invited to read from our communal library or receive help with homework in various school subjects. This initiative was made possible thanks to the grant provided through La Borinqueña Grants Program. Fundación Cortés continues its active participation in the Coalición Multisectorial por la Lectura ¡Todos a leer! We invite you to join this important initiative: Fundación Cortés: Under the International Eye From March 6th to 8th, our Founding Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo, was invited to present a specialized speech on the topic: "Innovative Program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellbeing and Mental Health," at the XIII International Congress HistArtMed 2024 in Havana, Cuba. The Congress was attended by prominent figures in medical sciences, artists, and intellectuals from the region, who shared their experiences in research and practice for human improvement through the integration of sciences. Additionally, thanks to collaborators from the International Council of Museums (ICOM) Washington, DC, and ICOM - Cuba, she was invited to facilitate an Educa Cortés Program at the Museum of Veterinary Medicine in Havana, Cuba. The program impacted students ages 7-8 from Nicolás Estévanez Murphy Elementary School. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: From March 6th to 10th, Don Ignacio Cortés, President and Co-founder of Fundación Cortés, was invited as a panelist at ARCOmadrid 2024. The panel was titled: Más allá de la acumulación: coleccionismos otros as part of the public programming:  La orilla, la marea, la corriente: un Caribe Oceánico. Voices in Contemporary Art (VoCA) held its first workshop of artist interviews in Spanish from February 27th to 29th in the Fundación Cortes galleries. A historic moment in which 22 museum professionals, curators, and artists from across Latin America and the Caribbean participated, including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Mexico, Peru, and Puerto Rico. It also included representation from Canada and Europe. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: Venice Biennale Fundación Cortés has had the privilege of sharing pieces from the Colección Chocolate Cortés for local and international exhibitions. Currently, at the 60th International Art Exhibition, the Venice Biennale "Foreigners Everywhere," two works by the Haitian artist, Philomé Obin, are on display. The Biennale began on April 20th and concludes on November 24th. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: Poli/Gráfica At the Poli/Gráfica of Puerto Rico: Latin America and the Caribbean, "BAJO PRESIÓN/UNDER PRESSURE," the work Respalda-There, 2007 by Puerto Rican artist Néstor Otero (1948-2021) is being exhibited. It is located in the west room of the Arsenal de la Marina Española ICP under the exhibition Represión: La Orden de la Violencia / The Order of Violence. Fundación Cortés is also participating as one of the satellite spaces of the Poli/Gráfica, promoting the current exhibition with free entry on Thursdays from 11am to 5pm, and on Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 5pm. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: Reyes Del Drama Executive Director, Adelisa González-Lugo, was invited by students from the Escuela Especializada en Teatro José Julián Acosta in the Old San Juan community, to participate as a workshop leader on the topic of corporate social responsibility and as a member of the judging panel for the school contest "Reyes Del Drama 2024" on February 28th at the Teatro Tapia. The contest was organized and directed by Fundación Cortés’ Educational Guide, Daniel Coss, who is a student at the aforementioned school. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: Professional Development Fundación Cortés is committed to developing its employees and fostering a teaching and learning environment. During this period the team, thanks in large part to the sponsorship of the Peter Alfond Foundation, participated in various activities as part of the Professional Development Program, which included: Conversatorio Construcción de Equidad Racial de la Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico en el Museo de Las Américas, Fundación Cortés: Demonstrative Practices, Voices in Contemporary Art: Artist Interview Workshop, El Guiso: Primera cumbre laboral en arte y cultura de la Universidad del Sagrado Corazón, XIII Congreso Internacional HistArtMed-Cuba, Coalición Multisectorial por la Lectura ¡Todos a Leer!: Conversatorio Aunando esfuerzos por la lectura en Puerto Rico, Cumbre Afro 2024: Cumbre Internacional Afrodescendencia en Puerto Rico, Tech my School: Spring Educators Conference 2024, Simposio de Neurociencia Cognitiva: Mindfulness y Bienestar. Below, our gallery of photos: When we come together, great things happen We have been working to strengthen and develop collaborative partnerships to maximize efforts and diversify our services. The organizations with which we have been collaborating include: Museo y Centro de Estudios Humanísticos Dra. Josefina Camacho de la Nuez de la Universidad Ana G. Méndez-Gurabo , Coalición Multisectorial por la Lectura ¡Todos a Leer!, Casa Dominicana, Espacio A, Vimenti School, International Council of Museums, y Asociación Americana de Arquitectos-Capítulo de Puerto Rico. News Friday, April 26th, Fundacíon Cortés was one of the beneficiaries of the Motorambar Charity Golf Tournament 2024, held at the Palmas del Mar Athletic Club in Humacao. Below, scroll down to see our gallery of photos: In The Press

  • 10 years of making the difference at Fundación Cortés / September - December 2022

    A decade of sharing with the world the excellence that distinguishes us as a nation and highlights Caribbean Arts even in difficult and reinvention times. Fundación Cortés turned 10 years in September 2022, since we first opened our doors for the first time to the community and started making a reality the vision of the Cortés Family. A vision that has continued developing throughout the years with the team from Fundación led by our Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo. Thousands of people from all over the world have participated in our cultural and educational activities, designed to respond to the adversities faced in our country, directly from our "creative trench". We give thanks to every person and entity that has supported our mission, either with financial contributions or helping in other ways to make this ten years the starting point of an unique trajectory, using our values and artistic tools to guide our actions. The month of September, after the passing of Hurricane Fiona, was an opportunity to further apply the lessons learned after the passing of Hurricane María five years ago. As we did in those times, our immediate response was to open our galleries to serve students that could not go back to their schools due to lack of electricity in their communities. Also, we focused on some of the most affected towns and decided to launch the Educa Cortés Program Post-Fiona, which integrated four focus areas: education, wellness, nutrition and joy. These efforts were supported by donations from individuals from Puerto Rico and outside of Puerto Rico, who responded to our GoFundMe campaign. Thank you so much for the support! Below we share a brief summary of the programs we were offering in different towns thanks to the donations received. Educa Cortés Post-Fiona: Yauco We want to give special thanks to Mariana Quiñones, the Social Worker from Escuela Elemental Santiago Negroni in Yauco, for her committment with the kids in her school. Thanks to her we were able to coordinate an unforgivable journey during the morning of October 12, 2022. During this visit we were able to impact more than 100 students from third, fourth and fifth grades through our Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health, and each student received the EducaKit, a meal sponsored by Chocolate Cortés and Pan Pepín, and the joy from the team for being in such a special place. The teachers expressed special gratitude when they saw how we integrated arts and wellness while the students had fun learning about Caribbean artists such as the great Colombian sculptor Federico Uribe. Also, we integrated music for creative expression and students and teachers were dancing while learning through the workshops. At the end of each experience students practiced oral presentation skills while presenting their final artworks, and recognized artworks as wellness tools. It was a day filled with emotions within this community, and it allowed us to reaffirmed our committment with the Caribbean arts as wellness tools to benefit our people. Educa Cortés Post-Fiona: Loíza On October 14, 2022 we visited another town that was very affected by Hurricane Fiona: Loíza. In the Escuela Belén Blanco de Zequeira we impacted 42 students from sixth to twelve grades. Same as we did in Yauco, we went personally to facilitate a two-hour workshop as part of our Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health. This was complemented with the distribution of the EducaKits and a snack for each participant. Is it our intention to continue identifying new opportunities to bring additional workshops for this community in 2023. Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health for Senior Citizens Thanks to the support from the ARPA Funds and Programa Mano Amiga from Fundación Plaza del Caribe and Fundación Plaza Las Américas we could launch our Educa Cortés Virtual Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health for Senior Citizens, which includes an EducaKit for every participant. This program was originally designed for female cancer survivors during the lockdown due to Covid-19, and we decided to also offer the program to senior citizens. It has been an honor for us to work with this population which shares their life experiences with us and has fun during the program sessions. To date we have reached adults from the following towns: Carolina, San Juan, Caguas, Guaynabo, Río Grande, Toa Baja, Lajas and Bayamón. In 2023 we continue recruiting new participants, so if you are interested or know someone that could enroll in the program, with free admission, please call or send a text message to: 787-567-4642 or write an e-mail to and include the name and contact information to call back. Launch of "Activity Manual for Creative Minds" (Manual de Actividades Para Mentes Creativas) Last October 2022 we launched our first Manual de Actividades Para Mentes Creativas from Fundación Cortés! This manual is part of the tools included in the EducaKit and introduces artworks from members of the Cortés Family as part of the activities. At the same time it is a coloring book with different exercises including math, writing, reading, among other topics, with the intention of creating new wellness habits in the day-to-day life and improve academic standards. We give thanks to our colleague Roxana Sánchez Ortiz for this initiative and its creation and design, as part of the materials included in our EducaKits. For more info you can send an e-mail to the following address: Hooray! Educa Cortés Program at the Carnegie Library During October and November 2022 we facilitated the Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health for children and youth in the Carnegie Library, as an alternate space while we were changing exhibits. Thanks to the City of San Juan and Antonio Morales, Director of the Arts and Culture Department, for having us in such a magic place and help us support the learning process for our students! "Puerto Rican Heritage Nuestro Orgullo Award" to Don Ignacio Cortés Last October 18, 2022 our co-founder and current President of the Board of Directors, Ignacio Cortés Gelpí, was awarded the "Puerto Rican Heritage Nuestro Orgullo Award". This award was part of the Gala hosted by Comité Noviembre celebrated in the iconic The Water Club in New York. The award recognizes Ignacio Cortés "for his devoted mission promoting, integrating and advancing the Puerto Rican Arts and Culture, showcasing exhibitions and programs created to visibilize and give the importance to the rich traditions of Puerto Rican Arts." Bravo, Don Ignacio! XXX Annual ICOFOM LAC Meeting Last November 1st, 2022, our Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo, together with Dr. Irene Esteves Amador, Director of Museo y Centro de Estudios Humanísticos Dra. Josefina Camacho de la Nuez/Ana G. Méndez University-Gurabo, moderated a panel discussion during the virtual XXX Annual ICOFOM LAC meeting with nearly 90 museum professionals attending from all over the Caribbean. They had the honor to introduce the guest speaker: archaeologist Kevin Farmer, Associate Director of the Barbados Museum and Historic Society, who elaborated on the taboos in museology, and ended with a Questions and Comments session. Mr. Farmer is the co-editor of the publication: "Plantation to Nation: Caribbean Museums and National Identity". In addition, on November 17 our Executive Director and Lead Educator, as a member of the Subcommittee of the Museums Association of the Caribbean (MAC), participated as a panelist at the MAC Annual General Meeting, presenting findings from the focus groups conducted in four languages Caribbean-wide, to inform the new definition of museums recently presented by ICOM after an 18-month participatory process all across the world. "10 Years: Thousands of stories at Fundación Cortés" Video Series Release To remember the ten year trajectory of Fundación Cortés, we decided to launch, with the help of Carmelo Establier, Social Media Coordinator from Cortés Hermanos, Inc., a limited video series introducing key people that have helped develop our cultural and educational programs. Personalities like the First Actress Cordelia González, the distinguished curator Humberto Figueroa, artist Rafi Trelles and Don Ignacio Cortés, among others, share their most precious memories and anecdotes throughout the ten years Fundación turned in September 2022. Visit our YouTube channel: to enjoy these series that will continue introducing more key personalities through 2023. New Exhibition at Fundación Cortés: "Eyes That Have Sight. To See Beyond" Celebrating the 10 years of Fundación Cortés, we inaugurated on December 7, 2022 our new exhibition titled "Eyes That Have Sight. To See Beyond" curated by the renowned Cuban independent writer, art historian and curator, Gerardo Mosquera. This exhibit reunites artworks from the Colección Chocolate Cortés and encompasses both our galleries, organized in "loose thematic beams" inviting us to look at the Caribbean through the eyes of this artistic selection, as the curator narrates in his curatorial essay. For this exhibit we published a special edition catalog which includes all the artworks from the exhibit, the curatorial essay and the messages from Ignacio Cortés and our Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo. To buy the catalog you can call or send a text message to 787-567-4642 or send an e-mail to . Series of presentations from Gerardo Mosquera in Puerto Rico Is it a great honor for us to have the great Gerardo Mosquera as the curator of the new exhibit that celebrates our ten years in Fundación Cortés. Furthermore, to share his numerous intellectual contributions inside and outside of the Caribbean through a series of presentations organized around the opening of the exhibit in collaboration with allied entities. We thank our collaborators that made possible the presentations given by Gerardo Mosquera at Universidad de Puerto Rico, the Museo y Centro de Estudios Humanísticos Dra. Josefina Camacho de la Nuez/Ana G. Méndez University-Gurabo, the Museo de Arte Caribbean University in Bayamón and the Escuela de Artes Plásticas y Diseño de Puerto Rico. Thanks for making this unforgettable journey possible! We want to highlight the visit from the Chancellor of the Escuela de Artes Plásticas y Diseño de Puerto Rico, Ileana Muñoz, together with the President of their Board of Directors, Dr. Abdías Méndez Robles. Thank you for accepting our invitation to visit our galleries as part of the alliances we continue to strengthen to benefit our community and develop future projects together. The celebration continues!! .

  • Newsletter: June - September 2022

    EducaKit Project Launch On June 3rd, 2022 we launched the EducaKit Project reaching over 46 students from the Aguadilla region, thanks to the support from FirstBank. This new initiative was designed by the Fundación Cortés team to maximize the reach of our Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health. Since 2022 we decided to include the EducaKit as part of what we give to every Program participant as an essential tool to unique opportunity to further promote creative expression. It allows each participates to take with them the necessary materials to continue practicing wellness exercises at home and share them with their family and community. Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health / emphasis on anti-racist education During the month of June 2022 we were concluding a series of programs and activities that promote anti-racist education through the arts. As part of the process we participated in the 1st International Summit of Afrodescendency 2022 offered by the UPR Río Piedras where we were able to learn new practices that allowed us to supplement our teaching and learning practices. We were able to impact 112 students from Loíza and surrounding towns, who also enjoyed our previous art exhibition: La Borinqueña in San Juan. We were also able to visit schools from the region of Loíza to offer the Educa Cortés Program and took part in Los Superhéroes del Ambiente Summer Camp offered by COPI (Corporación Piñones Se Integra). Furthermore, we organized a Virtual Educa Meeting: Anti-racist education and how the media plays a fundamental role in the discussion where we invited: Mayra Santos-Febres, Sandra Rodríguez-Cotto, Ámbar Suárez Cubille and Yanira Caraballo to be the panelists. We give thanks to Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico/Kellogg Foundation for the support that allows us to develop these activities. Virtual Program for the Elderly 2022 On the 23rd of June 2022 we were recipients of a donation given by the Programa Mano Amiga geared to support our Virtual Program for the Elderly. We give thanks to Fundaciones Plaza del Caribe and Plaza Las Américas for the support to offer this program, which is being co-sponsored by The Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) supervised under AAFAF to reach a total of 300 older adults from across the island. Thanks to the support from these two sponsors, this program will continue to be offered until May of 2023. Great news! Educa Cortés Summer Program 2022 : The Art of Wellness and Agroecology During the past month of July 2022 we received 42 students, mainly from public schools from the region of San Juan. The children and youth were participating in workshops focused on agroecology, wellness and art offered at Fundación Cortés for the second year on a row, lead by Jerome Zayas, Stephanie Rivera and Angélica Rivera, respectively. We wish to recognize the excellent work that four of our alumni students from the Cortés Summer Art Workshops did, working as assistants, motivated by their experiences from past programs from which they were a part of. This Summer 2022 we chose to focus on environmental protection and different practices related to sustainability. We are filled with joy to continue our alliance with the Finca Escuela de La Perla and the Municipio de San Juan to have used their spaces for the agroecology and art workshops we offered. We received a visit from Dulce Coco, who recited his Afro-lyrical poetry and a visit from beekeeper, Rafael Dávila who brought along some of his bees to teach us of the importance of these organisms within the environment. As part of the Summer Program we took a fieldtrip to COPI to learn more of the project that is going on over there about the reforestation of mangroves in the region of Piñones and Loíza, as well as enjoy a great bomba workshop. We also recognize the visit to the Escuela Deportiva de Vela and its program, Sail4Reefs, where we learned about the conservation of coral reefs and the sport of sailing as tools to learn and take care of our oceans. Thanks to the interventions of Dr. Antares Ramos Álvarez and our great Olympic athlete, Enrique Quique Figueroa, our students deepened their knowledge in ecological awareness. We are profoundly thankful to the sponsorship of Peter Alfond Foundation in supporting us for the second consecutive year to offer this program, which was also possible with funds from the Red Nose for Puerto Rico Fund administered by Puerto Rico Community Foundation. 1st Non-Profit Organizations Summit in Puerto Rico On August 12th, 2022 our Executive Director & Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo participated in the first symposium titled "Financial Community Advisers Summit". As part of the presentation Anitza Cox, Esq. explained: "There has been a significant increase of community based organizations, which impact 1 out of 5 people in Puerto Rico, mostly low income women and older adults". This is the sixth edition of this study, which was sponsored by Filantropía PR. 4th Encuentro Internacional de Ética Aplicada: Veo lo Bueno en Ti, Veo lo Bueno en Mí We took part in the 4th Encuentro Internacional de Ética Aplicada: Veo lo Bueno en Ti, Veo lo Bueno en Mí, which took place on August 26th, 2022 in the School of Medicine (RCM) of the University of Puerto Rico. This activity was attended by professionals at the international level who shared their initiatives to promote ethical practices in different areas of specialty, giving emphasis on the social changes that we are going through and how ethics is an essential tool for humanity to continue developing in the right direction. Then, on August 27th, 2022 we developed an activity with the participation from the community, as part of the 1st Festival de Ética Aplicada Veo lo Bueno en Ti; Veo lo Bueno en Mí celebrated in Cueva María de la Cruz Historical Park in Loíza. We worked on an artistic piece that represented the sectors of Loíza using African textiles, stitching them together by those who attended. Thanks for the invitation! Special guests in the Fundación Cortés We were honored by the visit of the Subsecretary of Commerce, Don Graves, along with his team and guests including Frankie Miranda, President of Hispanic Federation, last August 11th 2022 at Fundación Cortés. He was excited for the work that we do and empathetic with the necessity to offer psychosocial support to our communities. Later in August Around we also started establishing an alliance with the Auxiliary Secretary of Montessori Education (ASME) of the Puerto Rico Department of Education, through which we will be impacting youth and educators that guide themselves with this educational model. We also received a very special visit from a cohort of educators from Center For Design Thinking and Innovation in Education who participated in an Educa Cortés Program: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health. Thank you all for visiting! A hug from Puerto Rico to New York On August 31st of 2022 we presented ourselves for the first time in the Chocobar Cortés Bronx, in New York! There, over 30 people attended, including Maria Ángela López-Vilella, Executive Director of Museo Las Américas in Puerto Rico, the artists Marcos Dimas and Deliz Elsie, Nydia Edgecombe, Lourdes "Lala" Torres of The Evelina 100 Committee of NY, among others, who took part in the first fundraising activity of Fundación Cortés in New York. The support from our brothers and sisters in the diaspora was very meaningful to us and we recognize the necessity to continue sharing spaces that bring us together both in and outside of the island. Thanks to the sponsorship of Don Q New York and Chocobar Cortés Bronx for making this wonderful activity a reality. Coalición por la Lectura Since the past month of July, our colleague, Roxana Sánchez Ortiz, has been representing Fundación Cortés in the Coalición por la Lectura, working alongside other Third Sector organizations like: Puerto Rico Education Initiative, Fundación Flamboyán, Titín Foundation, Center For Design Thinking and Innovation in Education, Fundación Colibrí, Fundación Atención, Atención, Fundación Banco Popular, among others, with the support from the Puerto Rico Department of Education. This initiative seeks to promote reading at different levels, starting with K-3rd grades, to strengthen literacy skills among our youth and overcome academic challenges. Excellent! SAVE THE DATE! New exhibition at Fundación Cortés We will re-open to the general public next December 8th with a new exhibit that commemorates our 10th anniversary, curated by internationally recognized Cuban art critic and independent writer, Gerardo Mosquera. Save the date and come see what Fundación Cortés has to offer! Don't miss it!

  • Newsletter: January - May 2022

    Highlights from the most memorable outcomes during January-May 2022 By the beginning of 2022, we have reached over 350 students, teachers and others coming from all over Puerto Rico with the different programs we offer through Educa Cortés. In the past five months we have registered over 2,000 guests that have visited the exhibitions: Family Cortés: Art, Culture and Entrepeneurship and La Borinqueña in San Juan. When we join forces, great things happen We have been working to fortify our institutional allies such as ASPIRA from Puerto Rico, Espacio A and the Episcopal Church in Old San Juan in order to keep coordinating recurring visits to attend the Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Mental Health Program to benefit students from the public schools from the region and the young boys in the provisional residence from the church. Art, Wellness and Agroecology: The Future is Here We decided to create a new semester-long curriculum to complement our Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Agroecology Program due to the success that represented the past programming launched in April 2021. This initiative was possible thanks to a donation from Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico, Red Nose for Puerto Rico Fund, the collaboration with La Finca Escuela de La Perla, the Carnegie Library, and the assistance of the artists Angélica Rivera and Jerome Zayas. The students analized in more detail the importance of food safety in Puerto Rico and design techniques in three dimensional space using elements that can be found in nature. We give thanks to the Municipio de San Juan and Antonio Morales, Director of the Department of Arts and Culture, for providing us the space to make possible the workshops while in La Finca Escuela de La Perla have been doing the last renovations thanks to Peter Alfond Foundation funds. Slide to the left to see more photos of the Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Agroecology Program 2022 Semester. The educators from Fundación Cortés participated in different activities as part of the Professional Development Program which included: Cumbre Afro 2022, Museums Association of the Caribbean (MAC Caribe), The Rotary Club from Puerto Rico, MUSEUM NEXT: Museums Health & Wellbeing Summit, Tides Foundation/Spring FIRE Program 2022, visits to Liga de Arte de San Juan, MadMi Museum, Galería de Arte de la Universidad Sagrado Corazón, attended the Medioscopio presentation that was hosted in Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico and, last but not least, we visited and talked with the colleagues from Corporación Piñones Se Integra (COPI) in Loíza. From left to right: Dr. Adlín Ríos Rigau, Ignacio Cortés Gelpí, Elaine Shehab de Cortés, Veerle Poupeye, Adelisa González-Lugo, David Auerbach, Dr. Irene Esteves Amador and the companion of David Auerbach. Beautiful Encounters with Beautiful People Also, in March 12, 2022 we had the pleasure to welcome in our galleries Veerle Poupeye, art historian, curator and art critic specialized in Caribbean Art and Visual Culture and her guests. In April 14, 2022 side by side with Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez we were part of the Meet & Greet hosted in Chocobar Cortés located in Condado to celebrate the Puerto Rico Comic Con 2022. We appreciate the commitment of influencers like @soycamiliando and @little_sofiapr, whom responded to our call to promote the Activa tus Poderes con las Artes campaign so we can continue raising funds for our educational programs in Fundación Cortés. Fundación Cortés appeared in a press review in the Spanish newspaper El País, on April 25, 2022 emphasizing the excellent exhibition La Borinqueña in San Juan and the collaboration Chocolate Cortés launched in their classic yellow bars were Social Justice is the main topic; and at the same time is one of the five values that give us direction as an Institution. With the heart full of joy, our Program Manager, Stephanie Rivera, had the pleasure to announce our recent EducaKit Project in May 12, 2022 through the TV Program Contigo Siempre in Channel 13. During a very pleasant interview hosted by María María, Stephanie Rivera gave details about how we are going to maximize our resources and will continue being in contact with the participants of the Educa Cortés Program once they finish the workshops, engaging with them through our social media platforms. We wish to recognize Carmelo Establier, Social Media Coordinator from Cortés Hermanos LLC, who recently joined our staff in a pro-bono capacity to assist us in improving Fundación Cortés social platforms. Tides Foundation, through Caribbean Beyond Initiative, selected us to be part of the 10 distinguished non-profit organizations from the Caribbean region, who are participating from the C-Beyond Cohort 2022. This means a $20,000 grant for the Institution and our staff to be enrolled in the Spring FIRE Program 2022 were we are sharing, as Caribbean organizations, our best resilience practices in economic issues. This experience will strengthen our institutional plans so they can resonate better with our vision in Fundación Cortés. See you in the Next 10x10 Concert! Last Saturday, May 21, 2022, we launched the 10x10: Ten Concerts for the Ten Years since we opened our doors to the community for the first time. Sponsorship from The Jazz Foundation of America allowed for a magical evening with the Trío de Jazz Latino composed by Yan Artime (piano), Ramón Vázquez (bass) and Tony Escapa (drums), whom filled our Collective Room: Ignacio Cortés del Valle with music and culture to honor the ten years that we have been educating and inspiring with our passion for the Caribbean arts. If you are interested in reserving a seat for the next concert to be held on Saturday, June 18, 2022, the day before Father's Day, you can call or send a text to the following number: 787-567-4642 with a $25 donation.

  • Newsletter: January - April 2021

    We share the best moments during the period of January – April 2021 Published on May 10, 2021. During the first months of 2021, we have impacted over 400 students, teachers and adults in Puerto Rico through the Educa Cortés Program - The Art of Wellness and Mental Health. We successfully completed the Program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Self-Management offered virtually to more than 70 women who navigate their diagnosis of breast cancer. Sponsored by MCS Puerto Rico, Chocolate Cortés and Chocobar Cortés, in alliance with Susan G. Komen Puerto Rico Affiliate. In alliance with La Perla Farm School, we launched the new program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Agroecology with 8 scholarship participants along with the plastic artists Angélica Rivera and Jerome Giuliano Zayas. We are grateful for the waiver received and the sponsorship of: Red Nose for Puerto Rico Fund, Comic Relief USA, Puerto Rico Community Foundation, Chocolate Cortés and Chocobar Cortés. We continue to develop the curriculum and formalize the Wellness Mentoring Program, supporting young participants with the scientifically proven benefits of integrating art in processes of dialogue, reflection, and creative expression. We delighted the public from the balconies of Casa Cortés and through Old San Juan, complying with health protocols through the Cortés Cultural Surprises in times of pandemic. Thanks to the pro-bono work of Bianca Ruíz Granado from Sajo//McCann, we designed and launched the new Fundación Cortés website where you can browse and appreciate our cultural and educational offerings. The Fundación Cortés work team has participated in various virtual professional development trainings on Mental Health, Gender Perspective, Citizen Competencies, Mentoring, among other topics, provided by institutions such as the International Medical Corps, Childhood USA and Comic Relief. US, MENTOR, Fundación Banco Popular, Agenda Ciudadana, among others. Our Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo, was invited to be part of the subcommittee of the Museums Association of the Caribbean, ICOFOM-LAC and ICOM Barbados, for the study, discussion and production of museological theory from the perspective of museum practitioners of the Caribbean. We warmly welcome three new members of the Board of Directors: Eva Díaz Acevedo, Efrén Pagán Beauchamp and Javier Cortés González. From left to right: Adlín Ríos Rigau, Javier Cortés González, Eva Díaz Acevedo, Alberto Bacó Bagué, Elaine Shehab Licha, Ignacio Cortés Gelpí y Efrén Pagán Beauchamp. We create custom design programs and facilitate virtual workshops to complement course standards and expectations of the following institutions in our community: José Julián Acosta Specialized Theater School in the "Acting on Television" class of Professor and actress Lourdes Morán, and for The School of Fine Arts and Design of Puerto Rico in the classes of "Needs of the Exceptional Child", "Psychological and Sociological Foundations of Education" and "Learning Theory" of the Professor and plastic artist Bárbara Díaz-Tapia.

  • Newsletter: May - June 2021

    We share the best moments during the period of May - June 2021 Published on August 11, 2021 It is with great pride that on Monday, June 7, 2021, we inaugurate the ninth exhibition curated by Doctor and Professor Adlín Ríos Rigau with works from the Chocolate Cortés Collection entitled: Family Cortés: Art, Culture and Entrepreneurship. In the Collective Room: Ignacio Cortés del Valle, the exhibit showcases part of the artistic heritage of five generations in the family and celebrates 92 years of the company Cortés Hermanos LLC. Since last June 7th in the Focus Room: Pedro Cortés Forteza, we inaugurate our fifth exhibition of the Guest Artists Program with the exhibition of La Borinqueña in San Juan, curated by the renowned graphic novelist and philanthropist: Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez, who is also the creator of said Afro-Puerto Rican superheroine. The room brings together the creative process for the making of the comic and celebrates the heritage of Puerto Rican culture, while extending a hug to our Puerto Rican brothers and sisters who live in the diaspora. Since last April Cortés Hermanos began the campaign Activate your powers with the Arts! Starting the sale of Chocolate Cortés bars, Special Edition with La Borinqueña. With the purchase of these bars, you will be making a donation to the Educational and Cultural Programs of the Cortés Foundation and you will be able to collect a wonderful story divided into four episodes directed by La Borinqueña. Additionally, you can visit the page where you will find a variety of promotional materiales that benefit Fundación Cortés and Somos Arte. Congratulations to Phenomenon Films! The production house created by the students of our digital cinema workshops and of the pilot program of Wellness Group Mentoring, who competed in the 7th Ponte Los Cortos Festival with "Nada es como antes". You can access their youtube to see the trailer, from which Shery Marrero received the award for Best Supporting Actress and we are very proud with her recognition. You can also access the video "Basta Ya", on our YouTube channel created by these students in our Mentoring Program. It provides guidance on the problem of gender violence in Puerto Rico. On June 2, 2021, we celebrated the successful closure of the pilot program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Agroecology together with the families of the participants. It was sponsored by the Red Nose for Puerto Rico Fund, Comic Relief USA, Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico, Chocolate Cortés and Chocobar Cortés. We where able to expand this program and launch the 2021 Summer Program, for which an alliance was made with the Department of Art and Culture of the Municipality of San Juan. In preparation for the Summer Program, on June 22, our Educational Guides was trained and certified in a First Aid and CPR workshop, facilitated by Luis Vázquez, from Betto Ambulance. Summer Program 2021 Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellbeing and Agroecology. During the month of July we received a total of 40 participants between the ages of 5-18, who received a La Borinqueña comic, art materials, among many other things. Reading and the values ​​of the Fundación Cortés were actively integrated and they had the opportunity to attend the following workshops: Wellness and Mental Health- by Stephanie Rivera, our Program Manager, where students practiced mindfulness, identified emotions and channeled them through creative expression through comics. Agroecology, by Jerome Zayas, visual artist and cook, held at the La Perla Farm School. The students worked on the land while learning about food safety. Art and Nature in charge of the visual artist and professor of the School of Fine Arts and Design, Angélica Rivera and was facilitated in the Carnegie Library. We thank the municipality of San Juan for giving us the opportunity. We were invited to participate in the final presentation of the 2021 class of the program Creative Solutions for the Common Good, organized by Junipero Serra High School. This class brought together high school students from California and South Africa and was attended by leaders from over twenty countries around the world. One of the presentations of a student inspired us to create the "Score Card", with which the students measured the impact of the 2021 Summer Program workshops in a self-managed way. We recognize Ever Ibarra Berríos, who was part of the Program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellness and Self-Management during the month of May, and since then has volunteered to help us take care of the well-being of the participants of the 2021 Summer Program. Ever Ibarra has several years volunteering in multiple initiatives throughout Latin America and we witnessed her passion for social justice. We appreciate her initiative of sewing hats for everyone in the Program to protect us from the sun, as well as the pouches with the names of each participant to equip our young people when they return to school. We love you, 4-Ever! We are honored to have the visit of the young entrepreneur Pedro Carlo Crespo Rodríguez, founder of the company Terra Industries LLC. As part of the Summer Program, each participant was given a "Terra Box" to start their own gardens and thus promoting sustainability practices in their family. We thank the entire Chocobar Cortés team for providing the children's snacks, and always supporting us in our projects. We love you, team! We had the honor of being part of the workshop "Activate the Power of Touch to know the trees" facilitated by the ethnobotanical researcher María Benedetti, to learn to know the trees of the community in Old San Juan. In addition, the students learned a new song to honor Mother Nature. During the fourth week of the Summer Program, the participants were able to meet Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez in a virtual way. It was a very exciting surprise where students were able to learn more about his creative process and upcoming adventures from La Borinqueña. In addition, they were able to share their impressions after reading comic #1 during the entire month of July. Thanks to all the participants for becoming our superheroes and superheroines during the summer, demonstrating the values ​​and talents that our youth possess. All this was possible thanks to the sponsorship of the Peter Alfond Foundation.

  • Newsletter: August - October 2021

    We share the best moments during the period of August - October 2021 Published on November 22, 2021 ¡1,143 registered visits during the month of August at Fundación Cortés! During the month of August we had in our Focus Room: Pedro Cortés Forteza, the works of the participants of our Educa Cortés Summer Camp: The Art of Wellness and Agroecology accompanying the artworks from the exhibition La Borinqueña in San Juan. These works were part of the art workshop facilitated by the artist and teacher Angélica Rivera during the month of July. Our rooms were open to the general public seven days a week throughout the month for the enjoyment of our visitors. We began the month of August full of joy by launching our regular program Educa Cortés with participants from Espacio A, following health protocols. This visit marked the first time that we have resumed our regular programs in person, since the Covid-19 pandemic began, sponsored by FirstBank. 9 years educating and inspiring with our passion for Caribbean arts! What better way to celebrate our ninth anniversary than by sharing with parents and participants of our 2021 Summer Program sponsored by the Peter Alfond Foundation. Since 2012, over 14,000 participants have benefited from our educational experiences and more than 80,000 visits have been registered in our exhibition halls. We are happy to continue this extraordinary journey with the help of all of you and our sponsors. Thank you! La Campechada 2021 is dedicated to Don Ricardo Alegría-Gallardo, and in preparation for the event in which we will participate, we received Freddy Vélez and Albeyra Rodríguez from the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture on September 23 to discuss how to continue strengthening this alliance and preserve our historical and cultural heritage. Madison Reyes, a young actress recognized for her participation in the Netflix series Julie and the Phantoms, surprised us last August with a pleasant visit. This talented young Emmy nominee joined our Activate your Powers with the Arts campaign promoting the purchase of the La Borinqueña-Special Edition Box. To purchase the box please call 787-567-4642. In the month of October we had the pleasure of receiving Loida García-Febo from New York with her parents from Canóvanas, Puerto Rico. Loida was president of the American Library Association for the 2018-2019 term. The only Puerto Rican to reach such a prestigious position. Both her family and Loida were delighted with our exhibitions! On September 25 we received Roberto Cruz and Francisco Javier Rodríguez, two artists from the world of comics who collaborated on the comic Ricanstruction, which is part of our exhibition La Borinqueña in San Juan. These artists shared their creative processes and experiences with the public, collaborating with Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez, creator of La Borinqueña, after the passage of Hurricane María. On October 13 we received Douglas Pedro Sánchez Cortés, filmmaker and director of the film La Última Gira. We also shared with the actors Aris Mejías and Modesto Lacén, the editor Carlos Aponte and the producer Nadia Barbarossa led by the student and community leader from Loíza, Yosuel Osorio, who has been a participant in our programs. We appreciate the feat of the Chocobar Cortés team who created a special drink for the occasion called El Inquieto. What a banquet! It should be noted that we integrated sign interpreters for both presentations and thus created an inclusive and accessible space for all those present. We acknowledge the initiative of the organizations Espacio A, Center For Design Thinking and Innovation in Education, ASPIRA of Puerto Rico and Steps of Love Homeschool Group, among other organizations and public schools for visiting us with their students to benefit from our Educa Cortés program. These past months we have received students from towns such as Aguada, Aguadilla, Añasco, Arecibo, Arroyo, Bayamón, Las Marías, Loíza, San Juan and San Sebastián, thanks to the sponsorship of FirstBank. Thanks to the funds allocated by the Peter Alfond Foundation, the La Perla Farm School is undergoing a remodeling process to continue offering art, wellness and agroecology workshops in the coming year 2022 and for the use of the La Perla community. Thanks to Jerome Zayas and Asociación Impacto Comunitario La Perla for continuing these efforts and creating jobs for community residents! Cortés Hermanos, LLC, has just launched the Activate your Powers with the Arts campaign in celebration of National Puerto Rican Heritage Month in the United States. This campaign promotes the union with La Borinqueña to continue raising funds for our educational programs at Fundación Cortés and represents a great step to continue creating alliances through our Latin culture. Bravo! We want to congratulate our Executive Director and Lead Educator, Adelisa González-Lugo, MBA, for the recognition she received at the Women Economic Forum Caribbean 2021 through the Trasciende campaign. In addition, she represents Fundación Cortés in the Subcommittee of the Museums Association of the Caribbean-ICOM Barbados, along with colleagues from Aruba, Barbados, The Bahamas, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Martinique, Panama, Puerto Rico, Sta. Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago. We appreciate the invitation from the MCS Foundation to attend the annual Face-to-Face event where social investors and organizations that this foundation supports met. There we learned about the new fundraising campaign to continue supporting programs such as those of the Fundación Cortés.

  • Outcomes 2021

    Outcomes 2021 Published on January 21, 2022 Message from our Executive Director and Lead Educator Adelisa González-Lugo, MBA Collective Impact, Alliances, Education and Innovation are the four axes to describe what happened at Fundación Cortés during the past year 2021. Over the years we have seen how our passion for the Caribbean Arts has served as a vehicle for social transformation at the service of our communities. It fills us with joy to have impacted over 1,000 students, teachers and older adults through our free programming, which for the first time integrated agroecology workshops complementing our curricula focused on art and wellness. In line with our vision, I am proud to be part of the subcommittee of the Association of Caribbean Museums-ICOM Barbados together with nine representatives from the Caribbean basin to contribute to redefining the museum of the future. The commitment that always distinguishes our work team, and the extraordinary support of our co-founders, together with the Board of Directors and the trust of each of our social investors make all this possible. These efforts signify a new beginning of reflection and social and environmental awareness in the face of our tenth anniversary as an institution. Happy New Year 2022! Around 1,000 students, teachers, and older adults from around Puerto Rico were benefited through the different programs of Educa Cortés. Over 50 programs of Educa Cortés where offered to students from more than 45 public schools and 5 allied non-profit organizations. We launched the pilot program of Educa Cortés: The Art of Well-being and Agroecology in alliance with La Perla Farm School and plastic artists, Angélica Rivera and Jerome Zayas, impacting 8 participants from the La Perla community. We expanded the program Educa Cortés: The Art of Wellbeing and Agroecology for 41 scholarship students during the 4 weeks of July, integrating the Carnegie Library as a second educational space. We opened the 9th exhibition Familia Cortés: Art, Culture and Entrepreneurship curated by Dr. Adlín Ríos Rigau, which shows part of the artistic heritage of five generations of the family. In 6 months we registered more than 3,400 visits. We presented the 5th exhibition of the Guest Artists Program, La Borinqueña in San Juan, curated by its creator, graphic novelist Edgardo Miranda-Rodríguez. In 6 months we registered more than 2,200 visits. We held two presentations with artists participating in our exhibitions as part of our cultural offer. Likewise, we offered two workshops during La Campechada in honor of Don Ricardo Alegría. We offered 6 Cortés Musical Surprises in Times of Pandemic, thanks to the sponsorship of the Jazz Foundation of America.

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