March 7, 2013

Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina Releases Research Brief: Latino Immigrant Families

The Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina recently released a Research Brief about Latino immigrant families in South Carolina. Statistics show that the Latino population in the state continues to grow significantly. The population grew from 95,076 in the 2000 census to 235,682 in the 2010 census which represents a 148% increase. The research brief, authored by Foundation Senior Research Director Dr. Stephanie Cooper Lewter, addresses a broad range of issues and challenges facing the Latino population including health, education, economic hardship, family structure and legal matters.

“The growth in Latino families has a significant effect on both rural and urban South Carolina” said Tom Keith, Foundation President. “This brief takes an in-depth look at the obstacles individuals and families face every day.”

The largest growth areas in the Latino population include several coastal counties such as Horry, Berkeley, Beaufort and Charleston. Richland and Lexington Counties in the Midlands have shown to be large growth areas as well as Greenville and Spartanburg Counties in the Upstate.

This growth has had an impact on South Carolina’s workforce. Primary industries that employ Latinos include construction, agriculture, food processing, food service, landscaping and the hospitality industry. The Latino population has an estimated purchasing power of $4.5 billion based on disposable income available to spend after taxes.

“We feel that sharing this kind of information is an essential role for the Foundation to play” said Dee Dee Chewning, Foundation Board Chair. “We have an obligation to share what we have learned and offer others a chance to gain knowledge and awareness of the plight of Latinos in South Carolina.”

The Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina was founded in 1996 and has been a key player in providing funding, capacity building and advocacy related to poverty issues. The foundation has provided funding to more than 1,500 organizations since its inception, totaling more than $45 million. It conducts research to strengthen the effectiveness of its work and to facilitate learning and understanding. A ministry of the Sisters of Charity Health System, the foundation is a statewide funder having awarded grants in all 46 counties of South Carolina.

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From its Cleveland headquarters, the Sisters of Charity Health System provides oversight, leadership and strategic direction to more than 20 organizations responding to community needs in Canton and Cleveland, Ohio, and South Carolina.

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