September 2007  Issue No. 25                    REAP HOME PAGE         A publication of the Center for Rural Affairs

Rural Enterprise Reporter

REAP Rural Hispanic Business Center Is Growing

REAP is now completing phase three of the REAP Hispanic Business Center (HBC). Funding was provided by the Cooper Foundation, Nebraska Microenterprise Partnership Fund through the Nebraska Microenterprise Development Act, Small Business Administration Microloan Program, and the Community Development Block Grant program through the Nebraska Dept. of Economic Development.

Phase three continued establishment of a rural Hispanic business development program, the REAP Hispanic Business Center without walls (HBC), to provide key business development services to rural Nebraska Hispanic entrepreneurs. We anticipated this phase would impact 100 Hispanic startup and existing entrepreneurs, but the impact was actually much greater than projected.

REAP HBC specifically focused on communities in northeast Nebraska during phase three of this project. The Nebraska pilot communities were Columbus, Dakota City, Madison, Nickerson, Schuyler, South Sioux City, Wakefield, and West Point.

A few of the many highlights during phase three include:

  • Over 100 Hispanic entrepreneurs received substantial technical assistance or training from REAP staff during the project year.
  • A new REAP Rural Business Roundtable was formed at Columbus that will provide a vehicle for continued training and networking.
  • Existing Roundtable groups are also in place at Madison, Schuyler, and South Sioux City.
  • Numerous varied trainings were completed throughout the year.

Phase four of this project will further increase outreach to Hispanic entrepreneurs. We plan to hire a Hispanic Business Specialist in the southwest area of Nebraska, and Adriana Dungan has been promoted to REAP Hispanic Business Center Director. REAP will continue to research, develop, and build strategic partners to provide comprehensive New American services in all of rural Nebraska.

Contact: Adriana Dungan, REAP Hispanic Business Center Director, at 402.494.1013 or adungan@msn.com for more information.

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