By Gail Lara, Small Business Coordinator

Entrepreneurship is the backbone of our economy. The very fabric of our capitalistic society depends on small business owners, who are creating new jobs everyday. Apart from the obvious benefit of making money, entrepreneurs are benefiting society both economically and socially. Many people in low-wealth communities have big dreams and aspirations, yet no hope of turning their dreams into action. Those in underserved neighborhoods often have difficulty getting start-up funding for businesses due in part to poor credit, lack of capital, and limited access to banking services. Operation HOPE’s Small Business Empowerment Program is designed to help turn business dreamers into business owners, with the support of great partners like US Economic Development Administration.

One of the ways Operation HOPE empowers entrepreneurs is by providing a 12-week Entrepreneur Training Program, featuring intensive training, and access to crucial resources like business plan development, marketing and credit counseling services. HOPE Inside Northridge had the pleasure of welcoming Richard Stern to the third installment of their Entrepreneur Training Program. Mr. Stern is a leading authority in the fashion industry, specializing in product development and retail. As a previous President of The California Design Institute and a COO for major apparel companies, Mr. Stern offered his priceless wisdom and business savvy to the engaged Entrepreneur Training Program cohort. The class listened to every word as Mr. Stern provided valuable insight on how to gauge clients and understand statistics in order to target the most profitable market niche. The entire cohort is looking forward to gaining more knowledge along their journey to graduation and successful business ventures!

If you would like to register for an upcoming Entrepreneur Training Program, please contact or visit your nearest HOPE Inside location.