Name: Luis Rojas Cabrera
Country of Origin: Paraguay
Organization Name: Guaranglish
Organization Website: www.guaranglish.com
GUARANGLISH, is the first app that makes it possible to learn English directly from the Guarani language and vice versa. Guarani is the most spoken native language in Latin America.
What inspired you to start this organization? A significant obstacle for students is that only a small percentage of Paraguayans have access to English instruction that would allow them to participate in international exchange programs and/or qualify to study abroad. Unlike the majority of Latin America, the dominant language in Paraguay is the indigenous language Guarani, not Spanish; 89% of Paraguayans speak Guarani. However, the majority of the methods used to teach English in Paraguay are in a Spanish context. In addition, the Paraguayans that speak only Guarani tend to live outside of the capital resulting in a diminished access to English resources. I was one of them who lived in the countryside for 17 years, and thanks to a scholarship from the US Embassy, I had the opportunity to study English. Thanks to my personal experience, Guaranglish is an opportunity to learn English through Guaraní and vice versa.
What is the next big step you hope to help your organization reach? As an organization, we have a big dream; we want to be with all Paraguayans students and foreigners who love our culture. We dream to be the bridge that connects people with opportunities and hopes. Guaranglish has some important achievements such as: Declared of National Educational Interest by the Paraguayan Ministry of Education, Declared of National Interest for Young People by the National Youth Secretariat, and other distinctions that will give us the opportunity to reach our next steps as Social Entrepreneurs with strong commitment with Paraguay society.
What has been your biggest obstacle as an entrepreneur? The biggest obstacle has been starting the company without any financial support. This is one of the most difficult part of being an entrepreneur; you have to find the way to make your company grow looking for opportunities knowing that you have financial limited sources for everything you want to do as a dreamer. In fact, it is still being an obstacle.
What advice would you give other emerging entrepreneurs? Doing things that other people do is easy, but adding your own personal touch is definitely better. As an entrepreneur, you have to think out of the box, if you do it I am sure you will break paradigms!
As an entrepreneur, you have to think out of the box, if you do it I am sure you will break paradigms!