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Celebrate New Jersey’s Rich Cultural Diversity with AARP This Fall!

Happy senior woman dancing in her garden

Join us for Free, Fun and Educational Virtual Events!

Join AARP New Jersey's free, fun and educational virtual events this fall! We invite you to join us for a range of virtual events – all celebrating New Jersey's diverse culture in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month and Diwali.

Low Section Of Female Dancers During Cinco De Mayo

This Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 - Oct. 15), AARP New Jersey continues to support Latinos. Latinos are like millions of diverse threads connected through their shared heritage and cultural pride. Individually and collectively they strengthen the fabric of this nation, bringing color, vibrancy, passion and flavor to their communities and beyond. Because of this, AARP is committed to ensuring that Latinos can continue to weave futures filled with salud, dinero y amor.

New Jersey has one of the country's largest South Asian communities, which AARP New Jersey continues to support. This fall, we celebrate Diwali (Nov. 2 - Nov. 6), which is the Festival of Lights and celebrated by the South Asian community all across the world. It signifies new beginnings, the triumph of good over evil, and light over darkness.

Diwali celebration with diya lamps and fireworks

We hope you'll celebrate with us by participating in one or more of the events listed below - which include Zumba, Latin dance, yoga, and more - all while learning about brain health, nutrition or other healthy living tips.

Registration is required and space is limited, so please register today and invite a friend! Once you register, you will be sent a confirmation email with a Zoom link to join.

And don't forget to participate in our story collection project for the Latino community. You can find more details below.

Zumba Gold

Wednesday, Sept. 22 | 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. ET
REGISTER
In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, join us for a virtual Zumba Gold dance class! You’ll learn about ways to support brain health. Then, a Zumba Gold instructor will lead you through a low-impact, modified, easy-to-follow version of the popular, Latin-inspired Zumba dance workout.

Latin Dance

Wednesday, Sept. 22 | 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. ET
REGISTER
In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, join us for a virtual Latin dance class! You’ll learn about ways to support brain health. Then, an instructor will walk through different Latin dance styles, teach you core stylistic moves and break down each movement and rhythmic pattern in an enjoyable way.

Latin-Infused Cooking Class - Brunch

Wednesday, Oct. 13 | 11 a.m. - 12 p.m. ET
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Join us for a virtual healthy cooking class! To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, Chef Carolina Moratti will lead you through instructions on how to prepare a delicious, healthy, Latin-infused brunch. You’ll receive the recipe via email prior to the event.

Latin-Infused Cooking Class - Dinner

Wednesday, Oct. 13 | 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. ET
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Join us for a virtual healthy cooking class! To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, Chef Carolina Moratti will lead you through instructions on how to prepare a delicious, healthy, Latin-infused dinner. You’ll receive the recipe via email prior to the event.

Preparing for Diwali: Decluttering Presentation

Monday, Nov. 1 | 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. ET
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Join us for a series of free virtual events that celebrate Diwali – the Hindu festival of lights. In honor of the first day of Diwali – when celebrants typically clean and decorate their homes – join us on Nov. 1 to learn practical, easy-to-follow tips on downsizing and decluttering.

Yoga and Mental Resiliency

Wednesday, Nov. 3 | 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. ET
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In honor of the second day of Diwali – when celebrants welcome happiness and remove evil spirits – join us for virtual yoga. Take time to reflect and recharge with chair yoga, gentle poses and breath control techniques that aim to help mental health and focus. We’ll also discuss mental resilience.

Bollywood Zumba Class

Wednesday, Nov. 3 | 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. ET
REGISTER
Zumba Gold is a low-impact, modified, easy-to-follow version of the popular, Zumba dance workout. For this virtual class, we will focus on Bollywood Zumba in honor of Diwali! The moves are broken down in a slow and manageable manner, and choreography focuses on improving range of motion, coordination and balance.

A Puerto Rican Nurse From New Jersey Celebrates Her Culture and Love for the Latino Community

Gina AARP Family Portrait

Being Puerto Rican is more than just a self-describing noun for Dr. Gina Miranda-Diaz; it’s a way of life and a title in which she takes great pride. As a child growing in New York City, Gina spent the summers in Puerto Rico with her extended family, soaking up the culture and connecting with her roots. It was during her summer trips to the island where Gina learned to speak Spanish and developed a deep love for the language.  

Her appreciation for the Spanish language grew as she went into health care and became a board-certified public health nurse and Health Officer. Her ability to speak Spanish allows Gina to advocate for the well-being of her Spanish-speaking patients by guiding them to make informed medical decisions. Gina’s commitment to helping others goes beyond the walls of her office at the Health Department. She is an active volunteer, dedicating countless hours to serving communities in need, especially in her beloved Puerto Rico.

Gina was invited to participate in AARP’s Vivan Las Voces oral history project, which is dedicated to preserving the diverse stories and experiences of the Latino community, in collaboration with StoryCorps.  
This summer, Gina sat down with her son Alexander to share her love of Puerto Rico and how it inspired her to help the island after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. Listen to Gina’s story here.  

Join Our Audio Story Collection Project for the Latino Community and Share YOUR Story

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At AARP, we understand the power of storytelling. A good story will inspire, educate, and entertain. It is often through their stories that our members pass down traditions, share life lessons, and connect with loved ones. The stories of our AARP Latino members are reflected among the collective experience of an entire community, connected through a unique cultural identity. 

For these reasons and more, we are thrilled to announce that in collaboration with StoryCorps, AARP has launched “Vivan Las Voces(Long live the voices), a national audio story collection project dedicated to capturing the diverse stories and experiences of the U.S. Latino community.

Stories are captured through a conversation format, typically person-to-person, and participation is easy, fun, and rewarding.  You simply invite a loved one, or anyone else you choose, to join you on the free StoryCorps Connect online video conferencing platform to share a 40-minute conversation. 

Recordings will not only be available for participants to cherish and pass down, but the audio and a photo from each conversation also will be archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. As such, the collection of content from Vivan Las Voces will preserve in history a primary source perspective of the U.S. Latino experience through the powerful medium of storytelling. 

Participation in Vivan Las Voces is open to anyone interested in capturing something special about a loved one’s life through the easy-to-use StoryCorps platform. Conversations can be recorded in English, Spanish, or a mix of the two today by visiting www.storycorpsconnect.org.

Here are the steps and helpful tips for a successful StoryCorps Connect conversation:

  • Select an interview partner. This could be anyone you want to have a meaningful conversation with: a parent, grandparent, mentor, close friend, teacher, etc.
  • Prepare questions. You can use StoryCorps’ Great Questions list or create your own.
  • Create a StoryCorps account. Create an account for StoryCorps’ virtual recording platform at archive.storycorps.org.
  • Set aside a time to talk. Be sure to reserve enough time to not feel rushed. Most interviews take about 40 minutes.
  • Have the conversation of a lifetime. Log in at storycorpsconnect.org and let the conversation flow!
  • Preserve it for history. When the conversation is over, click “Stop Recording” and “Save Interview.” Enter a descriptive title, summary, keywords, and photo to make it easier for you and others to find your interview in the future. Don’t forget to tag the conversation #VivanLasVoces to have your story officially be a part of the Vivan Las Voces project.
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