Partner Highlight: Hispanic Collaborative
Celebrating our partner for National Hispanic Heritage Month
September 15th, 2023
September 15 to October 15 is National Hispanic Heritage Month.
It's a chance to learn and appreciate the diverse Latinx traditions, languages, and stories that have shaped our nation's identity. We celebrate the strength and resilience that define Hispanic communities and their remarkable journeys. This month we want to shine a spotlight on a partner organization that has upheld and supported Hispanic communities throughout Wisconsin—the Hispanic Collaborative. They believe that real sustainable change requires the initiative and engagement of community members.
The History of the Hispanic Collaborative
In 2016, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation embarked on an exploration of the metropolitan Milwaukee Hispanic community dynamics, strengths and barriers to progress. This undertaking, known as the Latino Study, drew upon the insights and expertise of over 100 Hispanic community leaders who understood the intricacies of the challenges faced by Hispanic and Latinx communities, both locally and nationally.
The results of the Latino Study ranked cities throughout the country, and categorized them in a list called the Hispanic Well-Being Index. Currently, Milwaukee sits at #44/50 on that list. The Collaborative’s goal is to move Milwaukee to the top ten. Due to the rapid growth within Wisconsin’s Hispanic community, the Collaborative has been able to create platforms, programs and initiatives that aim to increase Milwaukee's rating on the index.
Uplifting Our Communities
From fostering education and empowerment to promoting economic growth and community engagement, the Collaborative plays a pivotal role in improving the relationship between community leaders, business owners and community members. Some of the Collaborative’s initiatives include mercadoMKE.com, an online marketplace that supports local and Latino-owned businesses and Career Upskilling, a creative cohort program that helps train Latinos within in-demand job fields.
Empowering Hispanic Voices
At the heart of the Collaborative is a dedication to elevating Hispanic voices and stories. Often underrepresented in mainstream media and public discourse, The Hispanic community has long struggled to gain the visibility they deserve. The Collaborative acts as a platform where Hispanic voices can be amplified, stories shared, and perspectives understood. By sharing narratives that showcase Hispanic achievements, struggles and aspirations, the Collaborative empowers individuals to take pride in their heritage and contributes to a more inclusive narrative of the American experience.
Education and Cultural Preservation
“The more you know” is more than just a slogan—education is a cornerstone of personal and collective progress. Recognizing this, the Collaborative places a strong emphasis on education within its framework. By supporting conferences, educational initiatives, scholarships, and cultural preservation efforts, the Collaborative ensures that future generations of Latinx have the resources they need to thrive.
This year, FCI was honored to attend the URBANO Annual Hispanic CRE Conference hosted by the Collaborative, which aims to spur new development in Latino neighborhoods, new partnerships, new investments and new careers in commercial real estate. In addition to the conference, the Collaborative also provides a year-long, paid social media internship that works directly with Latino-owned businesses.
As one of our Hispanic Collaborative Emerging Developer Fund (HCEDF) partners, FCI has learned vital lessons from the Hispanic Collaborative about diversity and inclusivity. The Collaborative will undoubtedly remain a source of inspiration and guidance to us—and to many others—for generations to come. We are honored to work within the same space as the Collaborative, and will continue to fight side-by-side with them for much-needed change.
Click Here to learn more about the Hispanic Collaborative
Head to our Diversity in Real Estate page to learn more about the HCEDF and to inquire about your eligibility for the program