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Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, York woman shares her journey into entrepreneurship as an immigrant

Catalina Ruiz has been living in York for 22 years after emigrating from Mexico. Ruiz has owned her business at Central Market York for almost four years.

YORK, Pa. — Catalina Ruiz knew she wanted to own her own business, after all, it was her dream. 

"I was working as a housekeeper," said Ruiz, "I saved money, and I have the opportunity, so now I have my dream, my business."

Ruiz's business is Cupcakes & More, a sweets shop located in York at the Central Market. However, her love of sweets didn't start with her business. 

"It's a tradition for my family," she said, "my grandma, my aunts, my mother- we used to make everything. So, I learned from them to have all this love of food and desserts."

Though Ruiz has been running her sweet shop for almost four years, she says the road to navigating American life has not been easy, especially starting out as an immigrant.

"It's difficult I think for every immigrant in this country to have opportunities, so for me, it was a challenge. I try to speak English the best way I can. That is one of the obstacles here. People sometimes don't understand whether you are able to or what you want to do."

Ruiz has, fortunately, had the help of a CASA, a non-profit immigrant advocacy organization helping lifetime immigrants and working-class members for almost four decades.

"They help me with my confidence," said Ruiz, "I feel like I am part of the community, feel like I can speak and do things. You know, I feel that confidence."

As Americans celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, Ruiz has a sense of pride in her work.

"I feel proud to show the people part of my culture."

As her business journey is continuing, she is hopeful her dream, now reality will live on.

"I hope, maybe I don't know, next year, two years probably you come back maybe we'll have a storefront."

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