I am the current Mpowerment Coordinator at Batey Urbano and I’ve always had a passion to cater to the LGBTQ youth in my community. My drive is to educate others about knowing how to love themselves the right way and feeling empowered. I am very passionate in helping LGBTQ youth on knowing their HIV status and embrace who they are by providing help to a community that helps make that passion possible. I believe that there is always room for learning, improvement, and believe that every life experience is a lesson learned.
Gustavo Varela, Mpowerment Coordinator
I’ve been a part of Vida/SIDA for quite some time and began as a Core Group member in the Mpowerment program Generation L in February of 2011. Then in February of 2012 I became a group facilitator for L.A.B.I.O.S., a program for Latina trans-women and of Many Men Many Voices. In June of 2012, I became the Program Coordinator for Generation L. My passion for activism began in 2005 as the ASPIRA Club Federation President of ASPIRA Inc. of Illinois where I was the student representative in the Board of Directors. I have also been able to work for LGBTQ rights as my alter ego Milani Ninja since January of 2009. I’m a former Miss Paseo Boricua of the Puerto Rican and Latino community of Chicago. I hope to continue my career in the field of HIV/AIDS prevention work and recently received my certification in HIV testing, counseling, and partner services and want to continue empowering the young LGBTQ community of Chicago
Core Group Members & Volunteers
Eloy Diaz, Core Group Member
Hello my name is Eloy Diaz and I am a senior at the University o f Illinois at Chicago. I am currently working on getting a dual degree in the Biological Sciences and Psychology. After I graduate, my goal is to go to medical school and become a physician. I am a fun, pretty cool guy and enjoy a diverse set of interests. I strongly believe in the mission of generation l and it has been a great experience to be a core group member. It is important to educate LGBT minorities about safe sex. Many young people do not get adequate health education.
I’m a 20 year old guy. I have an interest in many areas, however I love the arts. I’m also a huge Lady Gaga and Pokemon fan. ^_^
I come from California Long Beach, but raised in Chicago. I want to make a mark in this world and explore new areas and leave a change in people
Eric Amaya, Core Group Member
I joined Generation L in November of 2012 and I am determined to do social work in the future. In the past I did activism for about 2 and a half years while in high school. Working with many people to make things happen brings me to a place that makes me happy. In my downtime I love playing Resident Evil on the PS3 or classic Mario games on the Wii. I love playing with my dog Shadow, and cat Ziggy, and I’m big pop culture fanatic. I enjoy being and advocate to the community and continuing to move forward to the future with my head held high.
Michael Poggio, Core Group Member
I’m a 24 year old Latino from the North-side of Chicago. I graduated from Flint Genesee Job Corps Center obtaining my GED and a Nursing licence in 2006. He has been working since the age of 16. He has worked as a nurses aid at Loving Hands Adult Day Care Center, Earning a certificate in recognition of great work. Then he relocated to his home town Chicago, IL with a career change in Automotive sales, while working at Autozone an oppurtunity arrived leading michael to another career change in Education, Working for Chicago Public Schools. Helping students transition into their careers or furthering their education. His passion to help others is a great gifth. Although he did not see or take it seriously due to the lack of mentorship. Many people who has worked with MR Poggio can honestly say he is a kind hearted individual that cares a lot about others and his communities. His weakness used to be to put others first before him.Very lovable. As he grew older he noticed he needed to do something for himself. He now attends Robert Morris University, majoring in Business Management. Fast tracking his way to obtain his bachlors degree.