LatinaLista -- One of the major concerns expressed about Latino immigrants is their "perceived" reluctance to assimilate into the mainstream. Just to be clear -- assimilation has nothing to do with giving up one's native language. But it does mean learning the new language of the adopted country and learning the rules, laws and how to navigate the system.
In these areas, immigrants clearly could benefit from someone else's experience who has been there and done that.
Someone like Alberto GaldÃ¡mez.
GaldÃ¡mez immigrated illegally from his native El Salvador in 1999. He eventually earned his citizenship, along with, the American Dream of being president of his company, a degreed college graduate and owning his own home.
Yet, he knows it's not an easy path to success.
"I know what it feels like to be lonely, afraid of being deported, and feeling there was nowhere I could trust to turn to for help," said Galdamez. "I have learned a lot in my 11 year journey and I want to share the skills and knowledge I have now so that others can more easily find success too."
To share his experiences, Galdamez has created the bilingual web site Don Alberto which specifically targets Hispanic immigrants.
The site features advice and help on a range of issues that can be baffling to newcomers, and even second and third generations. Such as:
1. Employment, how to find it and how to excel. 2. Immigration, Citizenship, Green Cards, immigrant status, and beyond.
3. Entrepreneur - Start your own business.
4. Money, Banking, Investing.
5. How to help your family outside the US?.
7. Use and knowledge of technology.
8. Learn to spend less and get more.
A main component of the site is the "community blog." Galdamez hopes that people will join the forum and use the blog as a way to help one another, form a support network and understand that success doesn't come overnight.
In reality, you can have a good life in this country, but it is in our hands to adapt and take the first steps towards change. The challenges we face represent the tools we need to achieve the good life, these are not easy to find and the skills you need are not easy to learn. This country offers more than you can imagine, but be prepared to work to achieve it.