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New partnerships offer a source of volunteers, sponsorship

Your local council’s goal of achieving diversity just got way easier.

Two new BSA partnerships with the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) aim to help with the challenges of finding manpower, funding, new charter opportunities, and sponsorship—specifically among Latino business leaders and families.

The USHCC partnership revives council-level professionals’ need to reach out to local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, says Marcos Nava, national director of Hispanic partnerships. The local chamber is a source of businessmen and women who can diversify council boards, as well as help generate new funds and charter opportunities.

“You know that you need to build that relationship [with the local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce], and now you have a reason to reach out,” Nava emphasizes.

Council professionals and volunteers will also gain similar value from the BSA’s partnership with the HACU, an organization that represents more than 400 colleges and universities committed to Hispanic higher education.

Once you’ve located a local Hispanic-serving institution in your community, councils can work together with the school to reach college students and graduates with potential internships, volunteer opportunities, and even long-term jobs, explains Nava. “Some of these college students are looking for leadership projects,” he adds. “Why not with Scouting? We can provide them an opportunity to do goodwill, and it also fulfills a need within the council.”

Get started by visiting ushcc.com to find your local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Just choose your states in the drop-down menu on the right-hand side of the screen. Or go to hacu.net and locate your nearest Hispanic higher-education institute by clicking “U.S. Members” in the center of the screen. This will take you to a list of the member colleges and universities in each state.

Then, “Start getting to know people, sell your story of Scouting, and make them aware of your needs—whether it’s a volunteer to head up a committee, or an opportunity for a new unit sponsorship,” advises Nava. “It’s a win-win.”

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