The Community Business Academy will help start and support aspiring small businesses


RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) – The inaugural Community Business Academy, a program for aspiring and current business owners in Richmond, is weeks away from launch.

The Community Business Academy is a 12-week course from The Jackson Ward Collective Foundation (JWC). A non-profit organization that helps aspiring and black-owned business owners access the resources they need to survive and thrive in the business world.

The academy is designed for aspiring entrepreneurs with strong ideas or concepts and current black business owners looking to strengthen their operations. Those accepted will attend weekly in-person sessions that will provide hands-on training and learn business fundamentals.

Melody Short is the director of programs and co-founder of the JWC Foundation. It explains what participants can expect.

“We’ll cover everything from exploring your business concept and making sure it’s a viable business model to the finances as well,” Short said. “We will explore marketing and every component of your business plan.”

CBA will be licensed through Rising Tide Capital, a New Jersey-based nonprofit that has provided business development services for nearly two decades.

With the help of sponsors like Altria, Capital One and Dominion Energy, academy participants will be able to enroll in the program. Participants may pay fees on a sliding scale, priced not to exceed $250. The value of the program is $3,000.

Benjamin Miles, a local barber who works in a salon at Altria’s headquarters, is excited about the opportunity. He dreams of opening his own unisex barbershop one day, but like any aspiring entrepreneur, he’s not sure how to get started.

“I literally don’t know how to start the process, so I’d like to see the first step to the actual last step, from ideation to launch and everything in between, but have someone guide me through it really through that process without it having to be catastrophic,” Miles said.

The academy is designed for aspiring entrepreneurs with strong ideas or concepts and current black business owners looking to strengthen their operations. Those who are accepted will attend weekly in-person sessions that will provide hands-on training and learn business fundamentals.

Melody Short is the director of programs and co-founder of the JWC Foundation. It explains what participants can expect.

“We’ll cover everything from exploring your business concept and making sure it’s a viable business model to the finances as well,” Short said. “We will explore marketing and every component of your business plan.”

CBA will be licensed through Rising Tide Capital, a New Jersey-based nonprofit that has provided business development services for nearly two decades.

With the help of sponsors like Altria, Capital One and Dominion Energy, academy participants can enroll in the program using a sliding scale, for a fee of no more than $250. The value of the program is $3,000.

Benjamin Miles, a local barber who works in a salon at Altria’s headquarters, is excited about the opportunity. He dreams of opening his own unisex barber shop one day, but as an aspiring entrepreneur, he’s not sure how to get started.

“I literally don’t know how to start the process, so I’d like to see the first step to the actual last step from ideation to launch and everything in between, but to have someone guide me in really through that process without having to catastrophize,” Miles said.

According to Fundera from NerdWallet and other studies, eight out of 10 black-owned businesses fail within the first 18 months. Inequalities in funding and resources are part of the root cause.

The average level of startup capital among black entrepreneurs is just $35,205, compared to $106,720 for white entrepreneurs, according to “Black and White: Access to Capital among Minority-Owned Startups,” NerdWallet reports.

It’s just one of the reasons Rasheeda Creighton, JWC’s executive director, says the CBA is critical.

“The disparities around financial contributions are huge, but what we also forget is that social capital and access to information is also a barrier to us being able to start our businesses,” Creighton said.

Like Short, Creighton is deeply passionate about helping others and feels honored to be in a position to help aspiring and current business owners of color.

Miles is just grateful for the support.

“It could change my generation, the people after me,” Miles said. “There will be so many people who need something like this.”

The academy begins Wednesday, Sept. 7, at the 1717 Innovation Center in Shockoe Bottom at 1717 E Cary St. Participants should attend the third and final virtual information session on Wednesday, August 3.

For information on the final CBA information session, visit here.

Copyright 2022 WWBT. All rights reserved.

Send it to 12 here.

Want NBC12’s top stories in your inbox every morning? Subscribe here.



Source link

Related posts

Next Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

17 − 16 =

RECOMMENDED NEWS

FOLLOW US

BROWSE BY CATEGORIES

BROWSE BY TOPICS

Welcome Back!

Login to your account below

Retrieve your password

Please enter your username or email address to reset your password.