Mérida, Yucatán - FEB 18-20th. As part of its core mission to build strategic bi-national partnerships, the USMF hosted a delegation of 10 Americans, most of Mexican descent, as participants in the Fourth Annual Latin America Impact Investment Forum (FLII). The 10 delegates were selected due to their role as leaders and investors in enterprises committed to social and community development. Delegates not only benefited from the general conference and presentations by cutting-edge social entrepreneurs, they were also exposed to leading actors in the Impact Investment Sector from throughout Latin America and beyond; including key foundations, corporations, NGOs, members of academia and entrepreneurs. The three day event, co-sponsored by the U.S.-Mexico Foundation, included seminars by experts in the field as well as ample cultural events, opportunities for networking and discussing innovative ideas and best practices for fostering investments that provide positive social impact in addition to returns.
The USMF delegation also met separately to discuss specific ways in which this group of committed U.S. entrepreneurs can collaborate with artisans from Chiapas and Yucatán in order to foster economic development at a regional level. This effort is another way to escalate the work begun previously between USMF People to People Program participants from San Antonio working with Chiapanecan artisans, and to strengthen initial meetings held earlier this year between a delegation from Los Angeles and artisans in Yucatán. The U.S. delegation also conducted several meetings to address the role of the Mexican and Mexican American Diaspora community in advancing qualified social impact investment ideas in Mexico. The participating delegates and the USMF are committed to the continuation of these discussions and the next actionable steps that arise from the recent invaluable cross-border meetings conducted as part of FLII 2014.