Elvin J. Austria Laceda – Growing Opportunities
Elvin Laceda shares his inspiring story of Hope, Innovation and Love – arriving from the Philippines with only $1.60 in his pocket and taxes to pay Elvin decided to use his struggle as inspiration. During his time at BYU-Hawaii he built a network of farm schools that have helped thousands of farmers more than triple their income and improve quality of life. Elvin has made it his mission to create and take every opportunity to improve the lives of those in need. This episode is an amazing look into the work done by Elvin and RiceUp to change the face of farming and bring thousands of people out of poverty and on their way to self sufficiency.
I know I have some regrets of missed opportunities, but I am really grateful that when the opportunity came I grabbed it. I always believe that great opportunity only comes, maybe not twice but only once, that’s why I always do my best to grab them whenever they are offered.
The farm school serves as an educational area. We created our own curriculum. It’s called “Agri-preneurship”. We help farmers understand business concepts and how to become successful “Agri-preneurs”. In the curriculum they learn how to become a good financial manager. They set S.M.A.R.T goals. They know how to use financial statements, they create good habits that change their lifestyle, habits that generate money and save money.
“In Memory of My Grandfather”
In the Philippines around 34% of agricultural workers are in extreme poverty. So I told myself, ‘I have to do something here in the memory of my grandfather.’ We started the nitty gritty work of working with these farmers in one village and then after that we worked in another village, from 17 farmers we now have 400 farmers in Pampanga, we replicated this in several other provinces.
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