* Living comfortably in Rancho Palos Verdes with her husband, retired Northrop executive Jaime Oaxaca, Carolina Oaxaca had her choice of activities to occupy her spare time. She decided "to give something back to the community. I believe strongly in that." As a volunteer working with abused and neglected children in the Los Angeles Superior Court's Child Advocates Office, she represents "the best interest of the child in court." Her report to the court may recommend that a child either be returned home, be placed with relatives, go to a foster home or undergo counseling with the parents. "Our office has been beating the bushes for bilingual volunteers," said Oaxaca. "There is such a tremendous need."
* "I want people to see firsthand that all cultures dance and sing and celebrate life in much the same way," said Jose Aponte, library director at the San Juan Capistrano Regional Library. Since his arrival a year ago, he has been host to sold-out Saturday night performances by an African storyteller, an Irish folk group, a Latino and Persian guitar duo, Latin American musicians and dancers. "I don't think a library should be just a warehouse for books," said Aponte, 40, a Puerto Rican who grew up in New York City. "Libraries should provide a smorgasbord of culture for the community. That means music, theater and the visual arts too."