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Organizational Background

Latin Americans for Social & Economic Development (LA SED) is a non-profit advocacy and social service agency that was established in 1965 to address the unique needs of the residents of Southwest Detroit.  Southwest Detroit is home to the largest concentration of Hispanics in Southeastern Michigan.   LA SED was the flagship Latino constituency-based organization of the city and was instrumental in ensuring that Bilingual education and services were provided to the community. 


LA SED's mission is to promote the social, economic & educational development of the residents of Southwest Detroit, and beyond, by providing advocacy, services and programs that open doors and create opportunities for our diverse community to better their educational level, employment opportunities, health, and wellbeing.  LA SED is committed to the truth that everyone in our community is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect and will not be discriminated against based on race, creed, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, sexual identification, age, disability, height, weight, veteran, or marital status.  Our programs provide the tools necessary to empower all people in our community to achieve the "American Dream."  



LA SED was established in 1965 as a non-profit, multi-service agency serving the Southwest Detroit community and residents.  The primary goal has been to address the inequities which negatively impact the Hispanic community and block their access to opportunities and pathways to education and economic equity that strengthen family income and security.  As a result of dedicated advocacy, several milestones were achieved, especially in the area of bilingual education.  LA SED was the foundation from which many other organizations grew and now provide necessary services for this and other nearby communities.  Those organizations include Community Health and Social Services (CHASS); Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS); Consortium of Hispanic Agencies (CHA); Latinos en Marcha (Now the Center for Latino/a and Latin American Studies at Wayne State University).

LA SED is a multi-purpose agency that hosts in-house human services and provides satellite offices and bilingual support for Michigan Department of Civil Rights; Wayne County Friend of the Court; Social Security; Legal Aid  & Defender Association and City of Detroit Project Clean Slate (Expungement assistance).  

Major Programs

After 54 years LA SED continues to advocate for social change and provide programs that open doors and create opportunities for families and children.  Our major programs include:

-  Youth Enrichment Programs (After School & Summer)

-  Sports & Fitness Programs

-  Youth and Parent Short-term counseling

-  Senior Citizen (60+) Programs

-  Bilingual/Bicultural Senior Citizen Program (Exercise classes, hot lunch M - F, healthy living and   wellness classes, doctor-supervised health monitoring, etc.)

-  Weekly Bilingual physician on site

-  MI Bridges Partners

-  Inter-generational Programs

-  Information & Referral

-  Translations

-  Pro-bono legal consultations

-  English as a Second Language (ESL) Classes

-  Citizenship Classes

-  Immigration Services

-  Basic Human Needs (emergency food, clothing & utility shut-off)

& weekly food distribution


LA SED Serves


98% of clients are at, or below, poverty level.
90% Hispanic
8% African American
2% Other
100% of children served through Academic Enrichment Programs receive school-provided lunches/meals

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