September 2008  Issue No. 26                    REAP HOME PAGE         A publication of the Center for Rural Affairs

Rural Enterprise Reporter

Hispanic Business Center Update:
REAP Continues to Expand Services
to Rural Hispanic People

BY ADRIANA DUNGAN, REAP HISPANIC BUSINESS CENTER DIRECTOR

From July 1, 2007, to June 30, 2008, REAP provided services to 396 Hispanic entrepreneurs through technical assistance and trainings, mainly in the Northeast and Southwest/Central 2 Nebraska region. Five Hispanic entrepreneurs obtained a REAP loan and/or leverage loan and a number of varied trainings were completed throughout the year.

Phase four of the REAP Hispanic Business Center (HBC) officially started July 1, 2008. Funding for this work was provided by the H.G. Buffet Foundation, the Nebraska Enterprise Fund through the Nebraska Microenterprise Development Act, the Small Business Administration Microloan Program, and from the Community Development Block Grant program through the Nebraska Department of Economic Development.

The objective of phase four is to continue establishing a rural Hispanic business development program, the REAP Hispanic Business Center without walls to create new economic opportunity, higher incomes, asset growth, and improved skills for rural Hispanic entrepreneurs. Services are available to Hispanic entrepreneurs across all of rural Nebraska wherever they may reside.

Nonetheless, we will focus efforts on eight communities and two counties with concentrated Hispanic populations: Crete, Dakota City, Dawson County, Madison, Nickerson, Schuyler, South Sioux City, Wakefield, West Point, and Scottsbluff County. Phase four will impact 200 Hispanic startup and existing entrepreneurs during the project year. We anticipate new Hispanic groups forming in the southwest/central 2 region in the near future. Existing Roundtable groups are in place at Madison, Columbus, Schuyler and South Sioux City.

This component involved hiring a Hispanic business specialist, Nancy Flock, in the panhandle/southwest-central area of Nebraska and promoting Adriana Dungan to the new position as director of the Hispanic Business Center.

REAP will continue researching, developing and building strategic partners to provide comprehensive New American services in all of rural Nebraska.

Contact: REAP HBC Director Adriana Dungan at 402.494.1013 or by email at adungan@msn.com.

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