Nonprofit aims to help business owners of color

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — August is Black Business Month. In Battle Creek, a nonprofit is working to make sure there are resources available for small business owners of color.

According to the National Black Chamber of Commerce, 80% of Black business owners have faced significantly more challenges getting their business off the ground due to their race. The W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek is working to change that.

The organization has recently launched a funding program to support small business owners who traditionally face challenges receiving loans. The credit program provides businesses with up to $10,000 to help build financial stability, discipline, and credit history.

They recently gave out their first line of credit and plan to help at least 10 more businesses over the next 18 months.

Boonikka Herring, the owner of Cakes by Boo, says this organization has helped her and it’s important that everyone has equal access to opportunities.

“When I mention some of the programs that are going on in the city, people don’t know about it, so I think really getting it out there to the people that don’t have access to the internet or that aren’t in specialized meetings or don’t necessarily get out very much is very important,” said Herring.

“We know that our Black business owners for a whole host of reasons, do not have access to the resources that that so many other business owners have in the community. Quite simply, that’s not fair. We need to do something to help,” said Jamie Schriner, the program officer for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

More information about the W.K. Kellogg Foundation can be found online.