Micro-Enterprise and Entrepreneurship

DREAM
(DOL’s Ready for Entrepreneurship Accelerator Modules)

DREAM is a multi-session program curriculum that intentionally focuses on low-income and socially disadvantaged entrepreneurs. We use the cohort framework to encourage cooperative business approaches with deep interconnections in our partner communities. Our approach is intended to create an ecosystem of support that provides access to the human, financial, and social capital needed to help marginalized community members create economic opportunity for themselves and their neighborhoods. The DREAM program will pilot its first module in late 2017.

Connecting Food Entrepreneurs to Financing

Dreaming Out Loud serves a trustee for Kiva’s Zero Interest Program, working to find food entrepreneurs we believe in and publicly endorse them as borrowers on the Kiva website. From there, we help to a launch our trustees through our farmers markets.

Alem

Meet Alemtsehay Adnew

Alem grew up in Ethiopia, moving to the United States to escape challenges in the country of our birth, where she was an entrepreneur. She has continued that spirit herein the US, preparing delicious Ethiopian food, coffee, and spices for the Southwest DC Farmers Market. We met Alem through the Latino Economic Development Center and we’ve helped her through the process of becoming a producer at the market, helped to crowd-funded a $2,500 Kiva ZIP loan for her, and expand her business.

Community Engagement Programming

Dreaming Out Loud develops programs and works with partners to raise awareness about the ways that community members can be part of building out a healthy, equitable food system. These include workshop and classes on food processing and storage; cottage food laws; and using producer, worker, and consumer cooperatives to create food businesses.