My husband and I have four children. He is a construction worker and I care for children in our home. I had long dreamed about converting our garage into a daycare so I could expand my business. A friend told me about FII–Albuquerque and we joined in February 2015. When I shared my goals with my FII group, other members told me about Abriendo Puertas, a New Mexico nonprofit that teaches people the skills needed to raise young children, and the early childhood classes at Central New Mexico Community College. I completed classes at both, allowing me to formalize my childcare business and attract more clients.
I also took advantage of FII’s 2:1 matched savings program and, in October, remodeled our garage into a daycare. In December 2015, the New Mexico’s Children, Youth and Families Department inspected the daycare and approved it. The inspector, impressed with my new skills and space, started referring her friend’s children. In just the first year after taking the classes and remodeling our garage, I increased the children I care for from 3 to 6, and my childcare income from $300 to $1,000 per month.