It will take a small army of business mentors and experts to help America’s small businesses build back from the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic – and SCORE is issuing a broad call for additional volunteers to help Hispanic entrepreneurs.
“We are seeing an unprecedented need for mentoring and expertise as Hispanic small business owners and entrepreneurs reach out for advice and support to grow their businesses,” said SCORE CEO Bridget Weston. “That’s why we are issuing a national call for volunteers to support our diverse client base. SCORE mentors donated the equivalent of $26.8 million supporting Hispanic-owned entrepreneurs and businesses last year.”
Hispanic entrepreneurs are the fastest-growing segment of business owners in the U.S. and Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15-October 15, 2021 is a great time to support Hispanic small businesses. While the number of Hispanic-owned small businesses has been increasing since 2013, data shows that minority-owned small businesses, specifically, Hispanic- and Black-owned small businesses, have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A nationwide SCORE survey in September 2020 examining the impact of the pandemic on Hispanic-owned businesses found that they were more likely to seek – but less likely to receive – outside funding from non-governmental sources, including expanded lines of credit and new loans, compared to White-owned businesses.
For example, while more than a quarter of Hispanic business owners sought new investors, no survey respondents reported success. Hispanic-owned businesses were also more likely to seek – but less likely to receive – government funding, including PPP, EIDL and SBA loans. SCORE launched its Hispanic Business Owners Hub to offer more resources to help.
“If you can give a few hours a month or a few hours a week– whether you are working or retired – America’s Hispanic small businesses need your business knowledge and expertise,” said Weston. “If you have marketing savvy, business coaching skills or expert knowledge in business management, America’s small businesses need you. If you can’t volunteer, please share our call to volunteer with your business networks and friends.”
SCORE is especially seeking Spanish-speaking mentors and those willing to share their expertise with its Latino client base. Volunteer roles and opportunities include:
Subject Matter Expert – Volunteer 2-10 hours per month and consult with mentors and business owners to answer questions in your area of expertise. Share your know-how and professional knowledge in e-commerce, accounting, human resources or information technology and be an invaluable resource for small business owners.
Local workshop presenter – Share your mastery of a business topic or strategy and deliver locally-developed business training for small business owners. The time required can be as little as 2-10 hours for each presentation.
Business mentor – SCORE mentors provide hands-on assistance to local small business owners or aspiring entrepreneurs, helping develop business plans and a roadmap for growth. Mentors have excellent interpersonal and communication skills, as well as broad and expert experience as a business owner or upper-level manager. This role requires training and then 15-20 hours per month of volunteer time.
To volunteer, apply today at score.org/volunteer. Your local SCORE chapter will reach out to learn more about you and to share information about onboarding and training. “By volunteering with SCORE, you can play a part in the revival of our nation’s economy, help others realize their entrepreneurial dreams, and assist in creating jobs in your local community,” said Weston.