Yuritzy Gomez via Crowdrise
November 12, 2012
The StartingBloc Fellowship begins with the Institute for Social Innovation.
The Institute is a five-day transformative experience during which young leaders learn to increase their impact, exponentially. The Institute curriculum includes an innovative case-study competition and sessions with industry leaders.
The 2013 Los Angeles Institute will take place February 14 -18 at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica.
We believe that economic value creation and social value creation are complementary. We believe in making money and doing good.
I look forward to being part of the Startingbloc Innovation Fellowship because I'm interested in helping in the economic development of my community. First, let me give you a little background about why this program is so important to me.
I was able to grasp at a very young age that I had the desire and power to make a difference in people's lives. Instead of playing with Barbie, I would pretend that I was a children's book author. I would "sell" my books to my family members and friends. One day my grandma asked me, "what are you going to do with all the money we give you?" I told her, "give it to kids who cant buy books, toys, or food. I don't like seeing other kids sad." Learning that there were people in the world that had significantly lower amounts of resources than I did created this desire to help provide options and opportunities to underserved communities.
I hope to use my recent experience in the economic development and finance sector to help families who are struggling financially. My family, like many others here in the U.S., took a hard hit during the economic downturn. We lost our home, savings, and most of our wealth. I personally know what it feels like to feel economically helpless and the need for a second chance.
I recently surveyed nearly 400 community members in my hometown of Pittsburg to determine community issues they would like to address in the coming year. These members consisted primarily of working-class Latino immigrants. When I asked them if they would be interested in addressing financial issues including money management and financial services, many of them did not know what that included or meant. Some would simply answer, "I barely have enough money to pay my bills and get my family through the month. I don’t make enough money to think about investing or other financial services."
This experience proves to me that it is the lack of financial literacy and services that force Latinos to resign to what financial options they currently have, which is not many. I want to help bring clarity and options to my community. Specifically, I want to create innovative services that work around their situations such as being undocumented and language barriers.
Why don't Latinos do not save for retirement: http://www.forbes.com/sites/kerryhannon/2012/02/14/why-latinos-arent-saving-for-retirement/