September 15 marked the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month in the U.S. Americans observe this every year until October 15 in order to recognize and celebrate the history, cultures, and contributions of Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South Americas.
According to the official Hispanic Heritage Month website, the celebration of the holiday started in 1968 under Lyndon B. Johnson as a week-long observance and was later enacted into law as a month-long celebration in 1988.
One way you can celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month is by recognizing and supporting the contributions of Hispanic women in the entrepreneurial field.
According to the National Women's Business Council, there were over 1.6 million Hispanic women-owned businesses in the U.S. in 2021, making up a share of 14% of all women-owned businesses in the country.
Latina-owned businesses are one of the fastest growing sectors of national entrepreneurship in the US, with 400 new businesses being launched every day.
Here are three ways that you can support these women-owned businesses this Hispanic Heritage Month.
1. Donate to organizations like the National Hispanic Business Women Association (NHBWA)
The National Hispanic Business Women Association (NHBWA) is a non-profit organization that’s purpose is to empower and encourage Hispanic women in business.
The NHBWA offers educational seminars and speakers, as well as opportunities for business referrals and networking.
The organization was established in 1997. Since it’s inception, it has awarded over 230 scholarships to students and hosted countless seminars for aspiring business women.
Donating to the NHBWA or a similar non-profit organization would help to expand the reach of educational opportunities for Hispanic women aspiring to go into entrepreneurship.
2. Find and support Latina-owned businesses.
If you don’t want to donate money to a non-profit, you can always shop from a Latina-owned business to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
Shopping from a Hispanic women-owned brand is mutually beneficial, as you may be able to find a product that you love and also help extend more opportunities into the community.
When looking for a brand to support, you can use a directory like SupportLatino.biz.
If you are an Amazon junkie, you can also go to their exclusive Hispanic Heritage Month page, where they are promoting Hispanic-owned brands for the duration of the holiday.
3. Review small businesses and promote on social media.
Perhaps the easiest thing that you can do to support a Latina-owned business is spread the word.
It sounds too easy to be true, but social media is one of the most powerful tools for brand growth. You just have to remember to hashtag.
According to Twitter, tweets with hashtags can increase engagement by up to 100% for individuals and 50% for brands.
If you enjoy a product or service from a Latina-owned business, consider sharing a post about it on social media.
Use hashtags like #HispanicHeritageMonth and #LatinaOwnedBrand.
None of these avenues of support are completely sustainable though, as we have to keep the momentum going even after the month is over.
While it is important to donate, shop, and share for the next 30 days, remember that the most important thing that you can do for Hispanic women-owned businesses is to support them after Hispanic Heritage Month is over.
In order to reach an equitable entrepreneurial sector, we must uplift small and growing brands all year-long.