OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — At CHI Health Center, hundreds of women gathered to learn more about building their businesses, networking and getting more capital.
Business owner and community leader, Sherrye Hutcherson wants to improve the lives of women around her.
"The goal is, is that if they don't have to go through things that we've gone through that weren't so positive, we can save them from that," Hutcherson said.
She hopes women are thinking about these questions.
"What are some things that could make it easier for them? How do you gain capital? How do you build your networks? If you have an issue, who do you go to?" Hutcherson said.
Licensed cosmetologist and salon owner, Tunese Goodwin is honest about the barriers business owners face in achieving their dreams.
"Sometimes it could be something as simple as bad credit, and if your credit is bad, it needs repair," Goodwin said. "That can be a major roadblock. Even knowing how to fix your credit, knowing how to budget, how to budget for your personal finances as well as your business finances."
The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation reports there are 11 million female-owned businesses and almost two million are owned by African-American women. Between 2007 and 2016 these businesses increased by 112%.
"Minority-owned is so important because I feel like it's vital we are a part of the economy and we contribute to that, in whatever way we can, in a positive manner," Goodwin said.
Still, she believes there's always room for improvement and is determined to help women get the capital they need to achieve their goals.
"More than anything, is that it's available and you can get it, and it's available to you and you have an equal right to it as anyone else as long as you are educated properly," Goodwin said.
Ultimately, community leaders hope the experience gives women the confidence they need to succeed.
"The minority entrepreneurs in this city and around the world have great ideas, it's nice to see them bring their ideas to fruition," Hutcherson said.
"If God has downloaded something into you, it's your responsibility to make it happen and this event is going to show you how to do that," Goodwin said.
3 News Now was a media partner for the conference. Founded in 2021 by Carmen Tapio, president and CEO of North End Teleservices, LLC, Nebraska Black Women United connects nearly 45,000 women in the state.