EAST STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — On the campus of East Stroudsburg University, an organization works toward sharing its Latin culture with its community during National Hispanic Heritage Month and beyond.

Being proud of your culture and sharing it with others, that’s the message behind East Stroudsburg University’s student Latin American Association.

“My culture means a lot. My values, my whole religion, my personality is my culture,” said Leolis Rodriguez, vice president of the Latin American Association.

Rodriguez and David Martinez Saenz run the organization also known as LAA, with its goal to educate the local community about Latin American culture.

“There are students that want to feel like they are inclusive and they’re in an environment where they feel safe and they feel respected, and they feel like their voice is heard and that’s where LAA comes into play,” described Saenz, president of the Latin American Association.

Operating out of the center for multicultural affairs and inclusive education, its director says they work with groups to make students feel like they belong.

“As much as we live in an individualistic society, that we have to be able to love and to learn and to respect each other. And I think the best way to do that is to educate people on culture,” explained Lyesha Fleming, director of the Center for Multicultural Affairs & Inclusive Education.

As the group plans festivals and other events sharing its culture, Martinez Saenz hopes people continue learning outside of Hispanic Heritage Month.

“Through American innovation and through the opportunities that we were given in this country, you know we found the place to empower ourselves and to contribute and to share you know who we are, and what we represent as a community,” added Martinez Saenz.