Hispanic Business Center Grows to Meet Increased Needs across Nebraska

This year promises to be an exceptional year for micro entrepreneurs and the Center for Rural Affairs’ REAP program. The Hispanic Business Center (HBC) is committed to excellence in delivering technical assistance, networking, assisting clients through Roundtable formation, and providing loans to Hispanic businesses.

Since July 1, 2012, REAP Hispanic Business Center staff provided seven loans to micro entrepreneurs across the state. We also developed Computer Classes in Columbus, Norfolk, Schuyler, and Wakefield. From July to December last year, 15 workshops were held. A highlight – 706 Hispanic individuals were invited or participated in our trainings. Basics Computers, Microsoft Office, Identity Theft, E-Commerce, and QuickBooks were some of the topics covered in the workshops.

Nancy Flock, Hispanic Loan Specialist, and I assisted at the Heartland Latino Conference in Omaha last November. With great speakers, the quality of presentations was outstanding, and we took part in several discussions. The networking was a plus, especially since we don’t have a chance to interact directly with our colleagues serving Omaha and Lincoln.

REAP staff were involved in hiring our new Hispanic Business Specialist. At this moment, it’s too early to disclose this information. But we are excited to announce the REAP Hispanic Business Center will continue to expand. 2013 will bring opportunities to deliver our services in new areas. It’s our goal to implement seven REAP informational meetings in the next six months in different communities to educate and promote our program.

If you need more information about the REAP Hispanic Business Center, please contact me at 402.371.7786 or email juans@cfra.org.