Grace Perez is one of the global leads of the Google Aboriginal and Indigenous Network (GAIN) employee resource group. Grace is using her position to help her community; using Google’s technology to bring their businesses online, connect them with resources to build digital skills, and more.
In honor of Native American Heritage Month this year, Google continues to honor and amplify Indigenous cultures through our products and services.
According to the U.S. Census, Native American-owned businesses contribute over $35 billion to the economy and employ over 200,000 people, yet one in six businesses (16.7%) have reported complete revenue losses due to the lingering impacts of the pandemic. Now, more than ever, our businesses require adequate resources for them to thrive, and there is no denying that technology is helping create that pathway forward.
Digital Coaching for Indigenous Communities
In November 2022, the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) and Google announced the expansion of the Grow with Google Digital Coaches program—which equips diverse small businesses with robust digital skills—to train Indigenous-led businesses with the help of a dedicated Digital Coach from the community. Jake Foreman is the Grow with Google Indigenous Community Digital Coach and, as such, he empowers Indigenous small businesses with monthly digital skills workshops, local hands-on coaching opportunities, and events for businesses to come together and learn from one another.