We have now passed our target, and we will keep it simple. The more donations your make the more spaces we will open to mentor Black businesses.
I am proud to be in a community with you all.
Keep Volunteering , Keep Donating , Black businesses keep signing up . We will make space for as many as we can.
Making a Collective Difference
My name is Akil Benjamin, I am Head of Research at COMUZI and the Director of M&C Saatchi Saturday School.
Throughout my whole career and in all my work I endeavour to improve the lives of Black and minority communities.
After seeing how many leaders from Adland have signed the open letter for solidarity after the murder of George Floyd, I deeply wonder what this manifesto for change looks like in daily actions for all that have signed.
This time has highlighted long standing racial injustices in the USA, UK and around the world and so I am now I am asking you to help me to make a long standing change of positive difference in kind.
I am aware many have added books to their reading list and are engaging in conversations with their workplaces but I am agitated in thinking about what we can do now to make a difference.
Many signatories of that open letter have made millions of pounds in creative business, won international awards and started campaigns which have moved the world. I believe sharing that know-how is something of infinite value and I do believe it can really make a difference if shared with anyone today. So why can this not be shared with Black Businesses?
Through my work at M&C Saatchi Saturday School we have organised to mentor 25 Black Businesses for 6months, but why can we not all work together to make a collective difference? Why can we not come together as an industry come together to mentor 100 Black Businesses?
If you wonder what the impact might be, think how much you charge a client for your time and the difference you make for your clients. If we got 100 Black Businesses mentored, on aggregate from all the volunteers that a significant investment this community would not have received.
I believe the only reason why this hasn't been done already is because no one has tried, but we are trying now.
To mentor 100 Black Businesses we need 3 things:
1. We need mentors. If you would like to donate your time 1 hour/month for 6 months please sign up here to volunteer: https://forms.gle/WRNgWQVfqBhVyrnp7
2. This isn't hard to do but it takes time, and time is money. I have calculated we can successfully mentor 100 Black Business for 6 months for £10k. This looks like £40 from every signatory. Your financial support to successfully realise this project this will be welcomed.
3. We need this to be shared and seen within your community. Please share it with your boards and share it with your senior leadership. These are the workplace communities we would like to impact most.
The funding will go towards ensuring this programme will be designed by Learning and Development experts, managed effectively by community managers and I will personally be managing the reporting on our impact throughout the 6 month period and sharing it with you all.
I believe this is a way to really make a difference, today.
You will still have to continue along the road of organisational change, but I don't believe the 100 Black Businesses will be the only benefactors of this programme. I believe you and your organisations will benefit from this in the long term too.
I look forward to hearing from you, and these Black Businesses already welcome your support.
If you read this as a black business and would like mentoring sign up here: https://forms.gle/owSXKRcddanBJ2cu8
Do reach out if you can help us make a larger impact.
Head of Research COMUZI
Director of M&C Saatchi Saturday School
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