Black BRAND investing more than $120K in grant funding from Sentara Healthcare, IKEA to support local minority-owned businesses

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Posted at 2:05 PM, Jun 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 12:29:30-04

NORFOLK, Va. - Black BRAND, the Black Chamber of Commerce for Hampton Roads, will receive two grants totaling $125,000 to help sustain local minority-owned businesses in Norfolk and Portsmouth.

According to a spokesperson, Black BRAND will receive $95,000 from the Sentara Healthcare Community Partner Grant and $25,000 from the IKEA Commitment to Black Equality. The grants are designed to improve the quality of life for underserved communities through education, health and the support of racial equity.

The money will primarily be invested through B-Force Accelerator, which offers local businesses financial and organizational planning, as well as free legal, marketing and accounting resources, through an intensive 12-week training program.

B-Force Accelerator is geared towards business owners who have been operating for at least two years and report an annual income under $75,000.

“In a world where obstacles have always existed for communities of color and minority-owned businesses, now is a critical time to explore ways to boost funding and secure access to capital,” said Blair Durham, president and co-founder of Black BRAND. “Thanks to support from Sentara Healthcare and IKEA, we can strengthen the B-Force Accelerator program to provide much-needed resources for local minority businesses and their communities not just to survive the lasting impacts of the pandemic but to thrive in the future.”

Applications are being accepted now through June 10 by 11:59 p.m.

Eligible business owners are urged to apply soon, as capacity is limited to fifty applicants. Click here to learn more.