The 15th annual \'Cambio de Colores\' kicks off in Columbia

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COLUMBIA - Cambio de Colores or 'Change of Colors' 15th annual conference is being held in Columbia this year.

The conference focuses on integration of immigrants in the Midwest.

The four day workshop engages medical professionals, researchers and those working in immigrant communities to share experiences and knowledge about immigrants in new settlements and neighborhoods. It also focuses on how to improve access to health care, education and housing.

The interim director of the Cambio Center, Steve Jeanetta, said even those people who are not ethnic are at the convention for a reason and play a vital role.

"It's about people that are also working in situations that are pretty diverse and will be connecting to the folks that are Latino or who provide services or who do research in communities where Latinos excel. So, there here for a lot of different reasons," Jeanetta said.

The seminar will include programs about ethnic communities, guest speakers, demographics of Latinos in Columbia and around the world and youth development.

"You can see over time how our understanding of these issues affecting communities has evolved and changed because of the work we're doing here. You see it in the types of presentations we get from year to year. You can see it in the calibrations formed as a result and you see it in the new resources becoming available to those working in these communities to those apart of those communities themselves," Jeanetta said.

Anyone who wants to participate in the events or learn more information can stop by the Courtyard Marriott in Columbia. The conference started June 8th and will run until June 11th.