Total loan: $10,000


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Brooklyn, NY, United States / Services

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A loan helped a women entrepreneur provide broader and higher quality special education childcare services and fund marketing initiatives.

Marie's story

I am a Haitian-American who immigrated in the United States in the early 1970s at a time when very few Haitians lived in New York City. Given the circumstances, I felt isolated but needed to quickly assimilate into a culture where I did not even speak the language. I entered school and was placed into a 2nd grade class, with no other Haitian-Creole speaking student, no bilingual education class, with access to only an English as a Second Language (ESL) services that was offered by a non-bilingual teacher. During my 25 years of working with Special Needs children and their families, I never lost sight of communities like the ones that I grew up in- areas that are populated by low-income, foreign-born residents that must assimilate into the American way of life. When I heard that they are not being served by many of the EI program approved agencies, I felt a need to start my own agency that will provide the residents access to this drastically needed service for their children. Having once walked in the shoes of these residents, I want my agency to connect with these individuals as well as serve as a voice for their families. I understand that many parents initially find it difficult to accept the fact their baby is not developing at the same rate as other babies. This is why I will hire highly trained interventionists from various backgrounds who not only speak the client’s language, but also understand their culture, which I hope will deliver these parents a bit of ease and comfort as they go through this difficult process with their children.