The past month has been a difficult one not only for the City of Orlando but for the entire nation that suffered along with us during the tragedy at Pulse Nightclub the morning of June 12, 2016. Innocent lives were lost and a city was shut down as the pieces to the horrifying nightmare were being put together that early gloomy morning.
At Hispanic Family Counseling, we have been working non-stop to help the surviving victims and their families cope with the tragedy. Our Executive Director, Denisse Centeno-Lamas, alongside other therapists, were the first ones on the scene that morning ready to assist the needs of the desperate people entering the First Unitarian Church where families and First Respondents were present.
As result of the tragedy, Hispanic Family Counseling offered free services for surviving victims and their families for a period of time. The office doors were open to donations from people, businesses and entities from all over, willing to help families in need. We are so thankful to entities like the University of Central Florida, The City of Osceola, The Rosen Hotels, Wellcare, Red Lobster, and others who were ready to bring us meals, water, gift cards and more for us to give away to victims and families. The city really came together for each other and it was a blessing to see the helping hands that were ready to work.
HispaFam too wanted to help the city at a much closer level so we teamed up with #ProyectoSomosOrlando in order to unite with the Hispanic Federation and be one of the culturally competent providers for Mental Health Counseling to those in need after the Pulse Nightclub Tragedy.
Soon #ProyectoSomosOrlando got international recognition with the partnership of Jennifer Lopez and Lin-Manuel Miranda once the two agreed to join forces and come together on a song that would impact the world and send a message of LOVE. Proceeds during the first three months of the single “Love Make The World Go Round” are going directly to #ProyectoSomosOrlando which will use the funds to provide free services to those affected by the tragedy at Pulse Nightclub.
HispaFam said present at the live performance on the Today Show in New York as Jennifer Lopez wowed the crowed in her white lace top and high-waisted pants giving the Selena illusion. Lin-Manuel also stole the show with his feature while they circled the lighted panel showing an image of a rainbow-colored globe.
The crowed had multicolored flags that were held high and moved to the beat while the song played. At the end, Lopez had everyone in the audience take the hand of the person next to them in and hold it high as the performance came to an emotional end.
It was an emotional sight to see as the crowd and the survivors that were present that day together sang in unison “Love Make The World Go Round” with no care in the world, with a simple smile on their faces. As we continue on living with this reality we just pray and hope for the best and know that as a community we must come together and be there for our fellow Pulse survivors, their families and loved ones.