SheaMoisture announces $1m fund to support women of color

Theodora Aidoo Apr 2, 2020 at 09:30am

April 02, 2020 at 09:30 am | Money Moves, Women

Theodora Aidoo

Theodora Aidoo | Staff Writer

April 02, 2020 at 09:30 am | Money Moves, Women

Pic Credit: iStock/monkeybusinessimages

In the wake of the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus outbreak, SheaMoisture, the personal care brand, has announced a $1 million relief fund to help support women entrepreneurs and small business owners of color.

SheaMoisture aims to give back to business owners in need, especially the ones who have been devastated by COVID-19. According to the brand, the fund is driven by its long-established Community Commerce business model and intends to show the power of small businesses to transform both local and global communities.

“We want you to know that SheaMoisture stands ready to help. Every day, we challenge ourselves to use commerce as a means to invest in our communities – we call this Community Commerce. It’s how we show up in hard times. It’s how we equip women and entrepreneurs with the ability to create lasting value for themselves and others. It’s our promise that our products will take care of you, and your community.”

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#SheaMoisture is proud to announce its $1M Fund to support women of color entrepreneurs and small minority businesses. The fund is driven by its long-established Community Commerce business model and intends to show the power of small businesses to transform both local and global communities. The fund also intends to minimize the financial disruptions many small minority, and black-owned businesses are experiencing during this time. Initiatives under the fund will include cash grants and also an e-learning lab for women of color entrepreneurs, which dovetails the brand’s existing programs that pair opportunities for funding with access to education and coaching. @sundialfamily #communitycommerce • • • Drop your business handle and stay tuned on how to apply!

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In a bid to empower women, transform communities and support purpose-driven businesses as the brand has always done, a portion of the proceeds of each purchase goes to support the education, access, and funding for small business owners of color.

Funds will be awarded for minority-owned businesses that are creating unique ways to reach their customers and communities. SheaMoisture will also provide educational resources in the form of online learning tools through the Women of Color Businesses E-Lab.

The Women of Color Businesses E-Lab is a virtual series platform that will help women access resources, mentorship, and advice on how to prepare for the economic downturn and how to plan for the recovery. “Once a woman of color entrepreneur completes the education series, she will be eligible to participate in a virtual competition to fund their economic recovery business plan,” the brand said.

The fund, according to the brand, also intends to minimize the financial disruptions of many small minorities, and black-owned businesses are experiencing during this time. To implement this initiative, SheaMoisture has partnered with “We Buy Black”, the largest marketplace for black-owned businesses to award relief funds through April.

In a statement, Cara Sabin, the CEO of SheaMoisture’s parent company Sundial, said: “During this unprecedented time of upheaval, small businesses are being disproportionately affected. For SheaMoisture, which was once a small business, the power of community and entrepreneurship is close to our hearts. Through this fund, we are committed to giving back to the communities that have helped us become who we are.”

Business owners of colour can apply now and throughout the month of April. Ten business owners will be selected and awarded $10,000 each.

SheaMoisture is a personal care company which focuses on cruelty-free hair & skincare made with natural, certified and fair trade ingredients. The company was founded in Harlem in 1991 by Liberians Nyema Tubman and Richelieu Dennis (and mother Mary Dennis), who were part of the Liberian Diaspora to the U.S. The company was inspired by Dennis’ grandmother, Sofi Tucker.

Tucker started selling Shea Nuts at the village market in Bonthe, Sierra Leone in 1912. By age 19, the widowed mother of four was selling Shea Butter, African Black Soap and her homemade hair and skin preparations all over the countryside. “Sofi Tucker was our Grandmother and SheaMoisture is her legacy” the company website reads.

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