Fresno students create website to help Hispanic community

Elisa Navarro Image
Sunday, January 28, 2024
Fresno students create website to help Hispanic community
Three teens at Patiño School of Entrepreneurship in Fresno County made it their mission to help Hispanic families with financial literacy.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- At Patiño School of Entrepreneurship in Fresno County, students experience unique and business-focused courses in their first two years.

"In their junior year, they form teams. They will come up with different experiments for business models until they land on one that has market potential," said Sean Begen, a teacher.

For Seniors Ryan Arias, Raul Lopez, and Alexis Robledo, their business idea hit home.

They founded Raices Unidas, a website and soon-to-be mobile app with the mission of helping the Hispanic Community access free information about financial topics.

"We all come from Latino households, and we have seen firsthand the effects of a lack of Latino Financial literacy within our community. We decided to create a solution for that need we have all seen," said Lopez.

The solution includes videos and tools in Spanish on topics such as raising your credit score or where to invest your money.

"We are going to have a catalog page, almost like a Netflix, for our courses that will be free. And we will have a community page to interact one-on-one," Lopez explained.

Sean Begen says he's proud of his students and their vision.

"I am very impressed with what they have been able to do. The work they have done behind the scenes has really shown their perseverance to overcome some of the challenges they had at the beginning of the year," said Begen.

Begen encourages his students to network, and they did exactly that by meeting with the Fresno Area Hispanic Foundation in October.

Yery Olivares says the Foundation is impressed with the business and the students' passion for helping Latinos and has provided a $2,000 grant.

"It was beautiful to see that they took it upon themselves to be the mediators. We are looking forward to seeing where it's going to lead. They are young innovators," said Olivares.

After graduation, these young founders are able to continue what they started.

Berger says the future of the business depends on their continued effort.

"We want to continue our business because financial literacy is important for everyone. It is lacking everywhere," Lopez said.

For news updates, follow Elisa Navarro on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.