Black History Season: Camden backs its Black entrepreneurs with a free online workshop

Camden Council is partnering with Black Pound Day this Autumn as it launches some practical initiatives to respond to the huge inequality its research has shown Black workers and businesses face.

In its recently published Building Equal Foundations Report, the Council found that across the UK:

  • millennials from Black, Asian and other ethnic backgrounds were 58% more likely to be unemployed than their White counterparts
  • the UK unemployment rate between October and December 2019 was 5.8% for people from Black, Asian and Other ethnic groups, compared to 3.4% for people from a White background
  • people from Black, Asian and other ethnic backgrounds have been more likely to be in sectors ‘shut down’ as a result of Covid-19.

As part of its response to tackling inequality this Black History Season and going forward, the council is entering into a long-term partnership with Black Pound Day to support the growth of the UK Black economy. Camden Black-owned businesses can now sign up to the biggest directory of Black-owned businesses in the UK to boost their visibility to consumers.

The Council has also organised a free online workshop for ‘Black Young Entrepreneurs’ from 6 to 8pm on Thursday, 5 November 2020.

This event, which is aimed at equipping young aspiring entrepreneurs with the practical skills and tools to start or grow their business ideas, will be hosted by Black Pound Day founder Swiss from So Solid Crew.

The event is also supported by Pop-Up Business School, who the council commissioned over the summer to provide free business training for its residents and Covid-19 resilience sessions for its businesses.

Councillor Danny Beales, Cabinet Member for Investing in Communities, Culture and an Inclusive Economy
“We know all our businesses and Camden entrepreneurs are facing really challenging and worrying times at the moment due to the pandemic – we are committed to doing everything we can to improve the job and business prospects of everyone in Camden.

“All the evidence shows that before and during the pandemic, Black people and Black businesses were hardest hit. While we drive through policies that will enable large structural reform, we will back initiatives like Black Pound Day, which rightfully celebrates the fantastic Black-owned businesses we have in Camden, and seeks to support them to survive and thrive.”
Councillor Danny Beales, Cabinet Member for Investing in Communities, Culture and an Inclusive Economy
Councillor Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for Young People, Equalities and Cohesion
“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought into sharp focus the existing structural inequalities that disproportionately affect people from Black, Asian and other ethnic backgrounds. Perhaps most worryingly, the pandemic has exacerbated these.

“Initiatives like these show we are committed to taking immediate action and intervention, and I’m hoping they will help inspire young Black people and Black businesses in Camden.

“Meanwhile, to drive our long-term strategy, we have set up a Camden Renewal Commission to develop practical solutions to help achieve a fair, sustainable economy and address the inequalities we have in Camden.”
Councillor Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for Young People, Equalities and Cohesion

Swiss, founder of Black Pound Day said:

“I am happy that Black Pound Day are partnering with Camden Council this Black History Month to provide business mentoring for the young people in the Borough.

“It's important that government organisations have staff that are aware of important initiatives that cater to marginalised communities, so when they reached out we were happy to oblige.”

Further information

The Black Young Entrepreneurs Event is taking place on Thursday 5 November from 6 to 8pm. The agenda is as follows:

  • 6.00 to 6.10pm: Introductions from Councillor Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for Young People, Equalities and Cohesion
  • 6.10pm to 6.20pm:Introductions from host, Swiss, Founder of Black Pound Day
  • 6.20pm to 6.50pm: Pop-Up Business School provide session on embedding good habits to grow your business, and holding yourself accountable.
  • 6.50pm to 7.30pm: Business owners will host breakout sessions with a group of attendees who signed up for their room. They will introduce themselves, explain what they do and their journey from business idea to conception. This is followed by a Q&A.
  • 7.30pm to 7.45pm: Hosts will bring guests back into the main room and talk about how they can get involved with the BPD network and leave room for any last questions or comments.

Special guests include:

  • Swiss: member of the So Solid Crew, and founder of Black Pound Day. Black Pound Day is a solution-based approach to support the growth of the UK Black economy.
  • Pop-Up Business School: Pop-Up Business School is a business support training company, which advocates for an alternative to traditional business start-up support. The organisation aims to work in specific communities to teach people how to start a business without borrowing money and without a formal business plan.
  • Ayrton Alexis: artist and songwriter, Ayrton's sound is all about blending stunning melodies with infectious grooves and great beats, in order to create a catchy, yet direct and edgy sound. Aryton is fully committed to music, and he has worked with various managements, including DJ SheDevil, Fredi Kruga and NUA Entertainment
  • Livity Plantbased Cuisine: with over 10-years’ experience as chefs within the catering industry, Livity, owned by Kareema and Kaleema, provide flavourful, Plantbased food. After noticing the lack of healthy nourishing vegan food, Livity, created a brand around offering a variety of dishes and products inspired by traditional Jamaican cuisine and culture.
  • Embrace Body Skincare: owner, Natalie Vincent, created Embrace Body Care to be a chakra inspired luxury skincare brand. Offering a range of handcrafted body blends, designed to soothe your skin and calm your soul.
  • Sky Beats: artist and musician, music producer and restaurant owner. Sky Beats has produced music for the leading figures within the music industry, from rap artist Lady Leshur to the legendary Wretch-32. Sky Beats also runs a company that creates sauces, and owns a cafe named Saucy Soca Cafe in London.