For those unaware, August is Black Business Month–a time to recognize and honor our local black-owned businesses. Illinois alone may have roughly 19% black-owned small businesses, but the current pandemic has already affected over 40% of these business owners across the country.
We've always worked hard to partner with and help small business owners on our YShop and through our Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Woodlawn. Over the years, that has naturally evolved into primarily woman and minority-owned businesses. We take pride in recognizing our local talent because they are not only offering quality work, but reinvesting right back into the community. If we can help give them a larger platform–it's the least we can (and will) do.
And then there are additional partnerships like what we've established with ShopBlack.io. This is a directory for black-owned, brick and mortar businesses that provide a purchase online buy in store (BOPIS) option. Business owners can enter their own information for free and the general public just needs to enter location details to see options in their immediate areas. It's a great solution even when you're elsewhere in the country and want that experience of a handmade product and/or local service.
YWCA Metropolitan Chicago has worked with almost 150 business owners since the YShop launched in 2015 and we want to shoutout our current black-owned business partners below. Please take a moment to look through the list and discover some hidden gems right here in Chicagoland!
- BrownSugar's Balloon Design & Academy
- Gloria Sherrod
- Gower Promotional Services
- Jessica Matthews
- Kisbi Coffee
- LegalShield Independent Associate, Kiela Upton-Smith
- Lisa Rene Boutique
- Love Cork Screw
- Model Atelier/Shop Confidence
- My Girlfriend's Photo Booth
- Ruth Nathan's
- The ER Factor
- Von Poof Cotton Candy