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Latino State News

Stewards Market Looks to Educate Youth, Community About Finance, Business

On Saturday, Dec. 4, The Stewards Market will host the grand opening of their new office space in the Humboldt Park neighborhood. The non-profit agency, dedicated to educating our youth about financial literacy while providing entrepreneurial opportunities within the community, will open their new space for youth to learn, community leaders to meet, and local businesses to develop partnerships.

“We are excited to mark our place in a community with such great potential,” says Rowan Richards, executive director of The Stewards Market. “We’ve been so involved in the surrounding communities since we started in 2006, it will be nice to be located centrally, among the individuals we serve.”

The Stewards Market has worked with several schools and organizations in the Humboldt Park, Cabrini Green, West Town, Roseland and Austin communities. This includes Manierre Elementary, Wells High School, Chicago Hope Academy and Northwest Institute for Contemporary Learning. Currently teaching 240 juniors and seniors at Wells High School, The Stewards Market is also working closely with administrators at Farragut Academy, UCAN Academy and Marshall High School this spring. Since its inception in 2006, The Stewards Market has worked hard to teach young people, and full communities, the essentials of financial understanding, career path development, cultural discovery and appreciation, and basic skills advancement.

The Stewards Market not only works in the classroom, but also focuses a large part of their efforts on providing work and entrepreneurial opportunities for community members, partnering with all local organizations, contractors and vendors. To get the office space up and running, The Stewards Market hired two area high school students as apprentices to help with the location’s vision and functionality.

“There’s no better place to look for help and ideas than within your own community,” says Richards. “Jobs are too few and unemployment in our area is too high to look elsewhere – we want to be a part of this neighborhood’s growth and success.”

One of these opportunities for success is the social venture, King Lizzy. Started by Richards and his team in 2009, King Lizzy Apparel sells printed T-shirts and sportswear to benefit The Stewards Market. In this past year’s senior class at Chicago Hope Academy, students were able to contribute to King Lizzy’s business model by designing their own shirts and developing ideas to promote and sell their products.

The grand opening event will take place on Saturday, Dec. 4, from 4 to 7 p.m., at 2540 W. Division St. All community members, local businesses, students, schools and media are welcome to attend.