Once a mere daydream of bringing empowerment and wholeness through health and education, Mi Futuro has evolved over recent years from a somewhat spontaneous pizza night, shared by high school students and healthcare professionals, to a well-organized and attended symposium of mental health workshops and healthcare seminars, co-founded and co-chaired by Musetta Perezarce, Registered Nurse/Teacher, and Wanda Tapia, Executive Director of Latino Service Providers.
In 2013, Musetta Perezarce, the visionary, used a grass roots approach, brainstorming on a notepad. At the time, she was a Hospital Supervisor at Kaiser Santa Rosa. Musetta personally approached respected hospital colleagues whom she thought might share her vision to inspire and empower youth as they pursue healthcare professions. She received an enthusiastic response and went on to launch the first event of 50 students.
That spontaneous 2013 daydream night of youth-pizza-med stations-healthcare professionals-mentor community. Above Right: Sean Moise, Emergency Room Nurse at Kaiser Santa Rosa, teaches students Emergency Medicine skills. Above Left: Eva Keifer & Karen Woods, Kaiser Santa Rosa nurses, mentor students during pizza dinner Q&A game.
Inspired by the Latino Health Forum she attended a few months later, Musetta petitioned Wanda Tapia, hoping for collaboration.At the time, Wanda was the coordinator of the dynamic Latino Health Forum. Wanda participated at the second annual event, and straightway committed to its future success & impact. Wanda and Musetta immediately began the shaping of the first official Mi Futuro, launched Fall 2015!
Wanda worked to receive first-year funding from the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) and support from the Sonoma County Department of Behavioral Health, through voter approved Proposition 63, also know as the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA). Wanda’s expertise in symposium management, program development, and community mobilization enabled Mi Futuro 2015, to take the next step and become an official symposium: "Mi Futuro esta en Carreras de Salud/My Future is in HealthcareCareers", complete with steering committee, syllabus, catered lunch, and hundreds of attendees.
Musetta and Wanda, personally have lived experience of stressors & social disparities common to Latino youth in California. They share mutual values to bring healing and wholeness to the individual and to the community through health, education, and economic empowerment.
Wanda and Musetta share a passion for empowering community, addressing mental health issues, and equalizing social disparities. It is their commitment to these values that drive them to create an event that informs, motivates, and compels youth to consider careers in the mental health and primary healthcare fields.
Mi Futuro Co-Founder/Co-Chair Wanda Tapia Executive Director/CEO Latino Service Providers, Sonoma County
Mi Futuro Co-Founder/Co-Chair Musetta Perezarce, RN, BSN, MBA Registered Nurse, Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa Adjunct Faculty Health Sciences, Santa Rosa Junior College