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Female Entrepreneur Targets $1.5bn Financial Support For African American-owned Businesses

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – A renowned and accomplished female entrepreneur, Ms. Sharifah Hardie has inaugurated a digital platform that is aimed at raising funds amounting to $1.5 billion for African American-owned businesses.

Dubbed, “Support My Black Business (SupportMyBlackBusiness.org)”, it is a crowdfunding platform designed solely to assist local Black-owned businesses to generate funding and to help them keep their doors open.

Ms. Hardie is a business consultant and President of the Southern California Black Chamber of Commerce – Long Beach Area, Candidate for Senate, Editor-In-Chief at Long Beach Black News, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Intellectual Television (IT TV), Founder of Black Guest List and a talk show host.

Through Support My Black Business, she encourages people to join hands and do their best to help the Black community thrive. Support My Black Business allows business owners to launch a campaign and tell their own unique story and start the fundraising process.

At the same time, business owners are encouraged to promote themselves, talk about their mission goals, flaunt their capabilities, and use the most enticing words so that the people understand their capability and are willing to donate. Notably, donations of any size are allowed, and all donations go directly to the business owner.

Meanwhile, the repercussions of the global pandemic are yet to be over, especially for Black entrepreneurs who are struggling to grow their businesses. Businesses need financial support to survive the fierce competition and the still-changing economic scenario due to the ongoing pandemic.

In a situation where entrepreneurs are finding it tough to get their loans approved or get funding from other sources, regulatory crowdfunding platforms have come up with quite a boon. Crowdfunding platforms are making it easier for businesses to break barriers. They are helping to support livelihoods, emergencies, and communities, and they are playing a major role in reducing glaring economic inequality.

The real challenge, however, is educating entrepreneurs about crowdfunding platforms, raising awareness, and assisting businesses in making the best use of them. Education and motivation are the keys – businesses need to understand that crowdfunding does and will help to grow their business.

Ms. Hardie said during a global pandemic, 41 percent of Black businesses closed across the county, adding that nearly half a million businesses went down and are all gone.

“They are no longer operating, and we didn’t have that many Black businesses to begin with. I knew I had to do something. I had no idea what I needed to do.

Then I watched a video online about these three Black sisters who owned an ice cream shop. Their business was struggling.

They were getting ready to go under. They went to their father and asked him what to do. Their father encouraged them to create a GoFundMe page. The sisters were embarrassed. They felt like they were begging by asking for people to give them money. Their father told them that they either crowdfunded and allow people to help them or they go out of business.

“Those were their options. They listened to their father, raised nearly $30,000, and are still in business to this day. I knew then that if it could work for those sisters, it could work for more sisters and brothers across America, and Support My Black Business was born!”, she said.


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