Black & Brown Founders Awarded Nielsen Foundation Grant to Train Black and Latinx Entrepreneurs
San Francisco – Black & Brown Founders has received a $22,500 grant from The Nielsen Foundation to further develop the organization’s Bootstrapping Bootcamp, a 10-week training program for Black and Latinx entrepreneurs who are building tech or tech-enabled businesses.
Black & Brown Founders collected data over the course of two years through seven events in four cities for tech entrepreneurs of color and found that approximately 55% of the founders that they served were struggling to get from concept to their first sales. Due to the challenges founders of color have with access to business capital, Black & Brown Founders has helped entrepreneurs learn how to launch products with limited resources.
The Bootstrapping Bootcamp program helps founders assess their talents, analyze the opportunities available to them, and build their first prototype to address a problem they are uniquely positioned to solve using technology. The program also provides a community of support and coaching to its students gain clarity and focus to keep them productive and accountable.
“Most entrepreneurs of color have modest means and few prospects of getting funding from traditional or venture capital sources. This doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to build a great solution to a problem, but it DOES mean that one has to approach the problem differently,” said Aniyia Williams, Executive Director of Black & Brown Founders. “It means that the founder has to lean heavily on what they already have, not what is missing. Our Bootcamp helps guide them through the process of discovery and gives them a framework to validate if what they are trying to build is viable. It’s very exciting work.”
Diversity, equity and inclusion is embedded in the mission of Black & Brown Founders, which is meant to help create pathways to economic security for people of color. Black and Latinx founders represent two of the most marginalized groups in America, fueled by centuries of systemic oppression through policy and social conditioning. This has created a substantial wealth gap, where the median net worth for Black and Latinx households is $9,211 and $12,460 respectively, compared to $132,483 for a White household. The Nielsen Foundation’s grant will help Black & Brown Founders’ catalyze long-term goal to reduce the wealth gap via the organization’s innovative use of data to shape its Bootstrapping Bootcamp experience.
The Nielsen Foundation seeks to bridge divides and enhance the use of data by the social sector to reduce discrimination, ease global hunger, promote effective education, and build strong leadership. The Foundation aims to fund initiatives that use data to improve the work of the organizations that receive grants, and that move beyond the use of data for needs assessments or program monitoring and evaluation.
For more information on Black & Brown Founders’ Bootstrapping Bootcamp, visit: www.blackandbrownfounders.com/bootcamp.