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Meet Marla Bautista

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marla Bautista.

Marla, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
A wife, mother, business owner, writer, and avid volunteer. Writing has always been a way to express my feelings and to create an imaginary world that was safe for me. I have lived a life of adventure and a life of tribulation. My passion is to strengthen the communities of less fortunate people. I have always been a giver.

Giving back is something that not only helps our communities, but it helps me too. I have been writing since my adolescent years. Being published in School newspapers, and articles all over. I wasn’t a published Author until 2017, upon the release of my first poetry compilation “My Thoughts Abandoned.” Since then, I have written for many publications, including a number of Magazines and Blogs.

My Product based business, The Bautista Project, started off as a mission. The mission was to provide resources to community members. Very quickly, I realized the need was greater than I previously assumed. I needed outside funding to continue to provide in this capacity. So I founded The Bautista Project, a custom decor and apparel business that uses its profits to provide for local communities.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I am a woman with a harsh past. I was born at Gardena Memorial as was raised partially in Watts. As a young child, losing both biological parents can often create irreparable emotions and a hardened personality. I faced physical and mental abuse. I became homeless as a teenager. I was a product of society. Adapting to street life and being exposed to situations that were dangerous and damaging to myself and my future,

Learning how to be an adult by being put in adult situations caused me to experience things no young woman should have to experience. But, it also taught me lessons that many people, even in adult years, won’t learn. I was able to learn about community resources, how to combat social injustices, and uplift people who have been torn down.

Upon reaching adulthood, I was homeless and struggling to find a way to obtain financial security and a stable living environment. Lucky for me, I had mentors along the way that were willing to not only guide me but also assist me during my journey.

We’d love to hear more about what you do.
I am the Founder of The Bautista Project. A custom decor and apparel business that donates a percentage of it’s profits to the local homeless communities. The Bautista Project started in 2016 as a custom T-Shirt business and soon blossomed into a bustling company creating custom products not only for personal use but for business distribution as well. Over the years, The Bautista project has donated over 500 lunches and blessings bags to homeless communities all over the world.

As a writer, I am fortunate that I was able to translate this ability into a blossoming career as a professional writer. I always strive to learn and develop my literary style and voice, approaching every challenge I come across as an experience to grow and develop as a writer. That’s why, in addition to working on projects like those I have already completed, I also seek out new types of endeavors I have yet to encounter.

Today, I hope to inspire people with my story. I am come from a unique background and have acquired both an informal and formal education. I am proud of my work. In embracing my story, I have created a movement that has inspired many others to give directly back and empower their own communities.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I hope to establish a platform large enough to reach those who truly want to make a difference in our world. The Ultimate goal for my company, The Bautista Project, is to build reintegration shelters for anyone who is having trouble finding their way back into a successful way of life.

I will continue to tell my story and the stories of others in hopes to inspire a generation of doers and those who want to make a positive impact on communities around the world.

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Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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