Compiled by Matt Loeschman
PHOENIX – In an effort to grow small businesses and support minority business owners in partnership with Local First Arizona, Arizona Federal Credit Union is proud to be one of the Financial Literacy Partners for We Rise Accelerator Programs and Fuerza Local.
These programs aim to provide Black and Hispanic business owners with the support and resources needed to succeed while building the strong small business community that Arizona has fostered.
Both programs incur no fees, have cohorts that last six months, and provide a structured classroom experience to learn from other minority and expert business leaders like those at the Arizona Federal.
The support provided by the local credit union helps business owners take the steps necessary to grow their business with confidence. By identifying common entrepreneurial pitfalls, like remembering to pay yourself first when starting a business, Arizona Federal helps participants avoid making these mistakes so they can focus on making their business successful. and not just to survive.
“While business finance often focuses on loan eligibility and navigating the application and approval process, we step back to look at the overall finances and strategy of each participant,” said Mohammed Ahmad. , director of the federal branch of Arizona.
“This is not a program for demotivated people. Our recommendations become a plan of action, and participants have regular check-ins to track their progress, resolve issues, and keep them motivated to keep going and overcome obstacles in their path.
Arizona Federal’s participation will expand the scope of financial support Local First provides for their programs. For example, the We Rise program offers cohort participants the opportunity to match Local First with their savings after opening an account with the Arizona Federal Credit Union.
“Small businesses face many obstacles, which can lead to frustration,” Ahmad said.
“This opportunity has shown me that small suggestions and advice can make a huge difference. For example, doing business with a local financial institution gives them a higher likelihood of loan approval due to the more personalized service they provide. receive against a computerized algorithm that big banks often use.
This partnership allows Arizona Federal to directly support the diverse communities they serve while aligning with their commitment to growing the local economy and businesses that make Arizona unique.