Growing up in a semi-strict environment, going to quinceañeras was the only opportunity I had at a social life. I’m sure most Latinas can relate. While I couldn’t spend the night at a friend’s house or go on dates, I sure could have a fun time at a quinceañera. It didn’t even matter if I knew the birthday girl or not! Quinceañeras, which typically happened every weekend, is the one place where Latinos, of all generations, can converge to celebrate tradition, socialize in a safe place, and converse about anything and everything.
Jolt Initiative, a non-profit organization that increases the civic participation of Latinos in Texas, is taking advantage of this by gathering to reach as many Latinos as possible and registering them to vote, while informing them about candidates and policies affecting our community. Jolt Initiative estimates that 50,000 quinceañeras take place across Texas. They are recruiting young teens who will be hosting their party to promote voter registration at their event. The campaign is called Poder Quince/Quince Power, and Jolt Initiative is seeking to partner with hundreds of quinceañeras to register their guest to vote and elevate voter registration in the state of Texas.
NEW: #PoderQuince will register thousands of Latino voters at quinceañeras in Texas.
— Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez (@cristinanextgen) May 6, 2019
If you’re wondering what a civically-minded quinceañera will look like, here’s what Jolt Initiative will bring to your party. “Poder Quince/Quince Power participants will receive a free photo booth at their event, free Snapchat filters geotagged to their venue and — for one lucky winner — a celebrity guest appearance,” and of course, voter registration cards.
“When we use the power of Latino culture, we can shape the narrative, reach millions of Latinos and build long-term voting power to win our community the dignity and respect we deserve,
Cristina Tzintzún Ramírez, founder and executive director of Jolt Initiative, said in a press release statement. “In Texas, where Latinos make up 40 percent of the state’s population and by 2030 will be the majority, quinceañeras are not an underground cultural tradition, they are part of the mainstream that touch the lives of millions of Texans,” Jolt Initiative states.
Their goal is to attend 15 quinceañeras per week in Austin, Dallas, and Houston and to register 5,000 people to vote in the first eight months of the campaign. Those are some impressive numbers, and it’s exciting to hear that someone is using this beautiful gathering of Latinos to inform them about important issues such as voting.
If you’re interested in having Jolt Initiative at your quince in order to register your guests, please register for the Poder Quince movement at poderquince.com.