Local News

Central American Immigrant Building Dreams in the Triangle

Posted July 25, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— Marco Roldan moved here from Guatemala. With his van he served Raleigh's Latino community for six years. At first it was a door to door peddling business. Now it's expanded into a store.

Roldan looks at his van and his store with pride. He's glad to see that something he worked so hard for is benefiting other people.

Roldan's store in North Raleigh, El Mandado, benefits a growing section of the population. As the Hispanic population continues to boom, more and more stores like Roldan's are popping up all over the place-- taking care of everything from special cooking needs to special greeting cards, all done in Spanish.

Rosalbana Ramerez is also new to the United States. Ramerez works at Roldan's restaurant. She admits coming to America for one reason-- money.

Roldan says more new immigrants are arriving with a greater knowledge of the English language. He says that's the only way to succeed in a foreign land. It's a tough, but promising venture.

Growth in the US means work. Roldan isn't the only person who knows it. Coming to America is an inviting idea. It's attractive to people because they can find jobs and a way to make a living. As long as that's the case, more immigrants will come. Roldan is betting on it.

The nation's Hispanic population is 32 million people. In ten years, Hispanics are expected to become the largest US minority.