Third Cohort of Taller de Permiso Begins


This month we kicked off our third Taller de Permiso small business incubation workshop in partnership with the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Economic and Commercialization Center. Nine community members shared their dreams with us, and signed up to join our “Emprendedores” program. The cohort is composed of immigrants and first generation college students who share a sense of commitment to community, besides an interest in entrepreneurship.

Socorro is a vibrant and energetic activist and community porrista (cheerleader) who currently sells her garden grown nopales and moringa at the Brownsville farmer’s market. She enjoys vending tremendously and says of her business, “this is my company, it is small and I love it.” She joined Taller de Permiso along with her husband, and they hope to expand their financial literacy and gain more access to resources so they can better understand food regulation and policies in the United States. 

Danny is a music educator from Venezuela, where he volunteered with “El Sistema,” a music education program for low income students and families in various communities. Now that he lives in Brownsville, he wants to continue teaching music to children and establish a program similar to the one he helped implement in Venezuela.

Magda is a costurera with an alterations and dressmaking shop located at the center of the rapidly changing Downtown Brownsville district. She has been sewing for over fifty years, and says she joined the workshop to gain resources to help her business grow, and to help other people in the community who are interested in starting a small business. 

Carla, Cecilia, and Cecilia are currently art students at UTRGV, who want to work together to create a community arts center to support local artists. 

Rosa loves reposteria, baking, and making all types of empanadas and cookies. She wants to turn this passion into a small business.  

Nereyda works in “manualidades,” and is skilled in many crafts traditionally led by women in Latinx communities. Besides wanting to start a small business, she is working to integrate more recycled objects into her artwork, and experimenting with using different materials. 

Martha is a community activist and is a local promotora, someone in the community that helps communicate information and connect people to resources through community organizing. She makes a variety of foods and artisanal goods, and wants to share the information she learns at Taller de Permiso with other community members who are also interested in starting a business. 

We have an amazing community in Brownsville, and the passion, vision, talent, and resourcefulness of our community can be exemplified by the many street vendors, crafters, food makers, and others who work in micro or informal economies in our community. Taller de Permiso seeks to honor this legacy, and to celebrate our local emprendedores as leaders in the community for daring to have a vision, and for working to make that vision a reality. 

Nansi Guevara