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Supporting Black-Owned Businesses:A Juneteenth Guide

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With Juneteenth quickly approaching, now is the time to start thinking about how you can support Black-owned businesses in your community and beyond. It’s important to acknowledge and celebrate June 19th at our places of work and at home — this looks different for everyone. 

At workplaces, leaders discuss the meaning of Juneteenth with their coworkers, wear red to pay homage to enslaved ancestors, or create a pop-up where employees can support Black businesses. And for those who choose to show their solidarity to the Black community at home, they prepare traditional Juneteenth foods (nobody is saying ‘no’ to barbeque!) and listen to playlists filled with songs of freedom. 

Every year, Juneteenth commemorates the last of the enslaved African Americans freed in 1865 from slavery. The impactful holiday is typically celebrated in the Southern parts of the United States and has recently expanded in observance countrywide. The very first Juneteenth celebration that was recorded took place in 1867, and included prayer, parades, and other festivities.

Contributing to economic growth within the Black community is sure to have a meaningful impact, so it’s a great place to start. Here are some actionable steps you can take leading up to Juneteenth that can contribute to economic growth, unity, and justice within your community or sisterhood:

Buy from a Black-owned business

It’s time to take out that “Need to Buy” list that’s hidden in your notes app. Whether you’re in need of new shampoo, some new clothes, or a painting to hang over your couch, there’s no better time to make a few purchases to support others. Many Black-owned businesses tend to host sales around the time of Juneteenth, which should encourage you to shop even more! 

Here are a few brands and stores that you could support this upcoming Juneteenth:

  • The beehive: This boutique (with an online storefront as well) features independent, local designers who create one-of-a-kind housewares, accessories, baby goods, jewlery, apparel, and more. 
  • BRNS: Get a reeeeallly early start on your holiday shopping and treat your loved ones (and yourself) to some trendy athleisure wear. BRNS stands for Be Real + Never Sellout, and features a collection of hoodies, shorts, and even baby clothes. 
  • GAS-ART Gifts: This traveling children’s bookstore also functions as a gallery and art studio. In addition to offering BYOB paint sessions and paint parties for kids, you can also purchase books and art through the shop’s website.

There are also hundreds of Black-owned businesses found outside of your local community. Bigger brands like Briogeo, Pattern Beauty, Ben Oni, Hanifa, and Mielle can be found at department stores (think Ulta, Sephora, and Target). However, your purchase will make more of a significant impact when made at a Black-owned small business. 

Eat at a Black-owned restaurant

If your living space is simply too cluttered for you to purchase anything tangible from a Black-owned business, consider dining out. This is a super fun way to celebrate Juneteenth with your family or friends. Simply schedule a visit to a local Black-owned restaurant, enjoy the food, and take your support a step further by leaving an honest review on Google. 

Purchase and read a book by a Black author

You can support your favorite local bookstore or Black author this Juneteenth by buying a new book. Whether it’s a novel that will further educate you on Black history (On Juneteenth by Annette Gordon-Reed) or a cookbook that celebrates African American cooking (Jubilee: Recipes from Two Centuries of African American Cooking), your purchase will make a difference.

Donate to an organization

There are dozens of organizations supporting Black communities that would benefit from a donation of funds or your time. Organizations like Healthy Black Communities (HBC) first started in Atlanta, and aims to improve the quality of life for Black individuals and families in the area. Black Girls Smile Inc. is another Atlanta organization that accepts donations and volunteers. This nonprofit works to empower the mental well-being of Black girls and women.

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