GUEST VIEWPOINT: HGAR Opens Doors for Small Business Training Supports Community Capital’s Efforts to Bolster Economy

Kim Meyers | March 2017

2017 “Staying Connected” small business participants.

WHITE PLAINS—The Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors was proud to host Community Capital’s first of four entrepreneurial training and networking sessions at HGAR’s state of the art offices in White Plains. The initiative, called “SCALE” (Success, Collaboration, Access and Learning for Entrepreneurs), is a program designed by Community Capital to meet the unique needs of Hispanic business owners, the fastest growing demographic in Westchester and the Hudson Valley.

From left: Julieta McPherson, VP Lending at Community Capital with Mario Alvarez, owner of Wilmar Electric and “Staying Connected” student.

Community Capital’s Vice President and Program Director Julieta McPherson explains, “The goal of SCALE is to provide Hispanic entrepreneurs with a combination of Spanish language classroom training and individual counseling to help them make operational shifts, improve business competencies and realize their growth potential.” A total of 25 Hispanic business owners participated in the Feb. 23rd session, which focused on legal issues such as contracts, partnership agreements, non-competes and lease negotiations. Upcoming classes in May, August and September will address advanced marketing concepts, human resource policies and fiscal topics such as break-even analysis, cash flow management and approaches to financial forecasting.

As a non-profit lender, Community Capital’s mission is to provide access to capital and training programs that create and sustain businesses and build affordable homes that add to the character and economic well being of neighborhoods in Westchester County and the Hudson Valley. “Nearly 80% of our clients are either low to middle income, minority, women or traditionally underserved entrepreneurs who lack access to conventional bank financing. This is mostly due to lower credit scores, less time in business and lack of collateral,” stated McPherson. The SCALE program works to break down these barriers and improve business acumen so minority and women business owners can achieve financial independence and a path to prosperity.

HGAR has been supporting Community Capital’s work for many years and most recently awarded the organization a grant through the Hudson Valley Realtor Foundation to fund an affordable housing program to help revitalize key tracts in Newburgh. More information about Community Capital can be found at www.communitycapitalny.org.

 

Kim Meyers
Kim Meyers is development director for Community Capital, NY based in Elmsford. Meyers has more than 25 years of financial and consulting experience and recently joined Community Capital, a nonprofit micro-lender, to spearhead its development activities. Prior to Community Capital she founded KSM Strategy Group to help nonprofit organizations cultivate donors, improve fundraising outcomes and manage programs.