Augusta, GA (WJBF)- The inaugural Latina Exposition kicked off Friday and continued into Saturday at the Richmond County Public Library for a full day devoted to promoting businesses owned by Hispanic women in the CSRA.
“I wasn’t expecting to have this tremendous outpour,” said Arturo Razo, the public relations director for the Association Culture Hispanic America.
Razo said the event packed the Augusta Richmond County Public Library to full capacity, cramming in exhibits for around 52 Latina-owned businesses.
The event featured door prizes, panels of Latina business owners, awards for entrepreneurship, and plenty of networking.
“Basically all who came out here were fully aware that that was a market that should be touched,” Razo said.
The idea for a female-centered event sprang from the celebration of Women’s International Month.
“It’s nice to see women being successful, and it’s nice to see Latina women doing something for our community,” said Liliana Noble, a board member at Asociasión Latina de Servicios del CSRA (ALAS).
ALAS offers Clínica Latina, which serves those without insurance or who are under the poverty line.
“We were able to talk to people, mention what we do…and we hope that we will have more people come to the clinics,” Noble said.
She also said that despite rampant anti-immigration sentiment that has been a hot topic in this year’s presidential race, the Hispanic community in the CSRA is thriving, and events like the Latina Exposition are proving that immigrants have something to offer.
“To keep on showing people that we are not just immigrants…that we want to work, that we want to be successful,” Noble said.
Organizers hope to do this event next year as well. If the popularity continues, it will be an annual event.