Money Matters: Financial Empowerment Through Knowledge & Tools

By Adriana Martinez-Guzman | April 14, 2022

Why does financial empowerment matter?

For some, finances can be a thrilling and exciting part of owning a business and/or living everyday life. But let’s be honest, only a few feel that way. For most, managing finances can feel overwhelming, tedious, and stressful. Countless people are challenged by financial matters, affecting all aspects of their lives. WESST wants to support people in their path to financial prosperity by providing information and resources that empowers individuals to confidently say, “I’ve got this.”

What is the Money Learning Lab?

To address financial challenges, WESST developed the Money Learning Lab, a program designed to empower New Mexicans by providing knowledge and access to tools to support them in their financial journey. The Money Learning Lab uses a Human-Centered Design approach to training development. WESST works with communities across the state of New Mexico to understand their strengths, needs, barriers, and motivations. By gathering this information, WESST, in collaboration with partners and participants, can deliver training that is developed with, for and in the communities we serve. Training development focuses on instructional design that is culturally and linguistically appropriate. No two training curriculums are the same, because no two communities are the same.

How can the Money Learning Lab support you?

Our training focuses on empowering people to manage their finances successfully and confidently. Topics often include:

  • Understanding your relationship with money
  • Tracking income and expenses
  • Developing an effective budget
  • Preparing for a financial emergency
  • Interconnection of personal and business finances
  • Personal and business credit
  • Accessing capital
  • Bookkeeping best practices
  • Cash flow management
  • Tax Planning
  • How to read and prepare a financial statement
  • And much more!

What are some examples of our current partnerships?
WESST has partnered with organizations across New Mexico to develop and deliver financial capability trainings. Currently, we are working with Partnership for Community Action and Growing Up New Mexico to provide state-wide home-based childcare providers with tools, bilingual education, and resources to lead successful and profitable businesses. We have also partnered with Siembra Leadership High School to support high school juniors with their entrepreneurial goals, paying special attention to financial matters. Additionally, we have partnered with New Mexico Dream Team to develop curriculum in Spanish that is tailored to immigrant, mixed-status communities. These are just some examples of our wonderful partnerships.

Are you interested in participating or learning more?

Congratulations for taking a step towards feeling more in control of your finances. We are honored to play a role in your growth and learning. There are a couple of ways you can participate in the Money Learning Lab:

  • Are you an individual seeking to grow your knowledge?

We can provide support and training through individual consultations and connect you with group training opportunities.

  • Are you a community organization or business looking to partner with WESST?

We can work with your organization to develop and deliver trainings designed for your members/employees.

Please contact Adriana (505) 246-6933 or amartinez-guzman@wesst.org for more information on how to get involved!

Meet our team

  • Adriana Martinez Guzman, Money Learning Lab Program Manager, oversees and supports the implementation of the Money Learning Lab and develops partnerships with organizations, businesses, and individuals.
    (505) 246-6933 | amartinez-guzman@wesst.org
  • Mara Flores Gallegos, Bilingual Community Liaison, conducts outreach for the Money Learning Lab to identify community partnership opportunities and learn about the diverse communities we serve.
    (505) 246-6900 | mflores@wesst.org
  • Rita C Veleta, Bilingual Consultant/Trainer, supports the implementation of the Money Learning Lab through training curriculum development and delivery and provides individual consultations to participants to address specialized needs.
    (505) 246-6937 | rveleta@wesst.org
  • Sandro Tonini, VP of Lending, supports the implementation of the Money Learning Lab by connecting with community organizations and creating partnerships for WESST. Sandro additionally develops and delivers training curriculum and provides individual consultations to participants.
    (505) 246-6932 | ctonini@wesst.org

About the Author

Adriana Martinez-Guzman 80x98

Adriana Martinez-Guzman

Adriana is passionate about creating a better community and sharing her knowledge. For the past nine years, she has focused on teaching financial education in New Mexico, coaching people to reach their goals, and supporting them in their journey. Adriana is often humbled and inspired by those around her and strongly believes in the power of diversity. Adriana graduated from New Mexico Highlands University with a Master of Social Work degree.

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