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Inside our Communities

Inside our Communities

Get the latest news, information and stories that matter to our Black communities.

BOF Investment Principal Position Brief

Black Opportunity Fund, a charitable foundation focused on advancing socio-economic opportunities for Black Canadian communities, is in the process of launching a $50 million CDN investment fund, which will engage in impact investing in Black-led companies. We are seeking a Managing Partner, who will be responsible for origination, due diligence, execution (including structuring and funding), post-transaction portfolio management and value addition in line with the firm’s investment strategy.

The candidate will assume a lead role in investments, participate in BOF Capital’s investment committee, and play a leadership role in the firm in terms of strategy, governance, business decision-making and fundraising. The candidate will be joining a newly created entity, and will have the opportunity to recruit and build the investment team. As such the candidate is required to have entrepreneurial attributes, and a shared sense of purpose and values with Black Opportunity Fund.

The firm will shortly be raising a new $50 million private equity fund focused on investing in established Black-led companies with growth potential, as well as co-investing in early stage companies with other Black-focused VCs. The firm is also preparing to launch a similar size fund aimed at creating a pathway to homeownership for Black Canadians, through a shared equity model. BOF has already secured a significant commitment of capital from National Bank of Canada, and is in advanced conversations with several other institutional investors for similar commitments.

This is a unique opportunity to build and lead an investment firm with a strong focus on catalyzing social impact and advancing sustainable economic empowerment for Canada’s Black communities.

BOF Investment Principal Profile

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Habitat for Humanity GTA Homes

Affordable Homeownership Opportunities through Habitat for Humanity

Unlock the benefits of a home of your own now. Habitat for Humanity GTA is offering homes across the Greater Toronto Area, from Oshawa to Brampton, for families, couples and individuals like yourself. If your household income is between $65K and $130K and you are struggling to afford a home in this market, Habitat GTA has a home that may be right for you!

Why partner with Habitat GTA?

  • No down payment: it can take decades to save for a down payment, Habitat GTA’s homes don’t require one.
  • Affordable mortgage: families pay a first mortgage geared to income while Habitat GTA provides a second mortgage to bridge the gap.
  • Peace of mind: you won’t spend more than 32% of your income on shelter, leaving room for building savings, investing in education and more. · Homes available near where you live and work: 58 & 62 Sky Harbour Drive (Brampton), 25 William Street (Brampton), 485 Normandy Street (Oshawa), 423 Old Weston Road (Toronto), 500 Wilson Avenue (Toronto).

Homes Feature:

  • Zero downpayment required
  • 1 – 4 bedrooms
  • 1 – 3 bathrooms
  • 483 – 1530 square feet
  • Parking included at most communities

Minimum Eligibility Requirements:

  • You are employed full-time or full-time equivalent
  • You hold 3 years of consecutive employment history in Canada
  • You are first time homebuyers and cannot afford a purchase on your own

Select homes have been delivered in part by CMHC’s federal funding for first-time homeowner Black families in the GTA. Eligible applicants must have at least one person in their household who identifies as Black when applying for select units.

Ready to apply? We encourage you to learn more about the program, see unit details and start your application: https://habitatgta.ca/homeownership/

Questions? Please contact the Habitat GTA team at families@habitatgta.ca

Habitat GTA Homes – Feb 2024

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Beyond the Decade: Moving from Hashtags to Action

A Keynote & Conversation with Gaynel Curry with Moderator Craig Wellington

To sign up, please use the below link or scan the QR code displayed on the flyer

Black Opportunity Fund cordially invites you to Beyond the Decade: Moving from Hashtags to Action, a conversation with Gaynel Curry Independent Expert Member of the UN Permanent Forum of People of African Descent

In this engaging conversation, we will examine the achievements of the UN Decade for People of African Descent, discuss the need for a 2nd Decade, and delve into the ongoing efforts required. Our focus will be on the current and emerging opportunities and threats impacting the socio-economic advancement of people of African Descent on the continent and throughout the Diaspora.

The UN Permanent Forum of People of African Descent, which became operational on 2 August 2021 through UN General Assembly resolution 75/314, serves as a platform for improving the safety and quality of life and livelihoods of people of African descent. It also serves as an advisory body to the Human Rights Council.

Ms. Curry, with over 23 years of experience at the United Nations, has made significant contributions to the International Decade for People of African Descent. Her various roles have included Human Rights Advisor in Geneva and Gender and Women’s Rights Advisor in New York, with key portfolios in Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Timor-Leste.

This event is proudly presented by the Black Opportunity Fund, the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, and The McGill Centre for Human Rights & Legal Pluralism, along with Miller Thomson, Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies – University of Toronto, and Diversity Institute – Ted Rogers School of Management


Date: February 8, 2024

Time: 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Location: MILLER THOMSON LLP, Scotia Plaza, 40 King Street West, Suite 5800

#WeBackBlack #BeyondTheDecade #UNDecadeAfricanDescent #AfricanDiasporaAction #HumanRightsDialogue #AdvancingAfricanDescent


Please be aware that space is limited, and only individuals who have registered in advance will be allowed to attend.

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Black Opportunity Fund board member Eleanor McIntosh appointed as new HDSB Superintendent of Education

We are pleased to announce that Black Opportunity Fund board member, Eleanor McIntosh, has been appointed as the new Superintendent of Education at the Halton District School Board (HDSB) effective January 29, 2024!

This position is an addition to the senior team, to help the HDSB continue to achieve success in student learning and further the goals of the HDSB Multi-Year Plan.

With her rich experience spanning over two decades, Eleanor has served in various educational leadership roles and has been a dedicated community advocate. She began her career as an elementary math and science teacher and has been a school administrator in the Durham District School Board for 20 years, where she served diverse school communities in five different schools. In addition to working in a variety of settings with a number of specialized programs in Ontario and internationally, Eleanor has served in several key roles. These include Vice-principal, centrally assigned Education Officer, and Secondary School Principal.

Eleanor, who serves as Chair of Black Opportunity Fund’s Education Task Force, has always been an inspirational leader, advocating for inclusive and transformative education. We wish Eleanor success in this newest chapter in her journey, with the Halton District School Board, helping to catalyze student learning and educational excellence.

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Breaking Barriers, Inspiring Generations: The Historic Lincoln Alexander Bust Project

In Canada’s rich history, the Honourable Lincoln ‘Linc’ MacCauley Alexander stands tall as a pioneer, his legacy now made permanent at Queen’s Park. Today, January 21st, marks not only a tribute but a celebration of the ongoing preservation of his indomitable spirit. Through our commitments to preserve his legacy, we are ensuring that his contributions will continue to inspire future generations to come.

In this historic moment, the Black Opportunity Fund extends heartfelt gratitude to all who bore witness and supported this project. Your commitment has made this living legacy possible, and we are honoured to share in this historic event.

This bust is more than a sculpture, it is a testament to the power of representation and the acknowledgment of diverse voices within the fabric of Canada’s history. Embracing Lincoln Alexander’s legacy, we recognize that his impact transcends history books and still exists in our present day. We celebrate and uplift Linc as he did for Black communities across the country.

As we head towards another exciting month celebrating Black history and Black futures, let us renew our commitment to fostering an environment where diversity flourishes, allowing the dreams of every Canadian, past, present, and future, to soar.

2023 BOF Annual Report

The Black Opportunity Fund 2023 Annual Report has been prepared to present and account for our fiscal responsibilities, operating activities, and achievements, to community, stakeholders, and funders for the fiscal year ended March 31st, 2023. The report is available for viewing.

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BOF ‘Watch To Give Back’ on Amazon Prime Video Canada

Black Opportunity Fund (BOF), is starting the year with an impactful partnership with Amazon Prime Video’s ‘Watch To Give Back’ initiative.

Beginning January 3rd, continuing through Black History Month until February 28th, Amazon Prime Video Canada will donate 100% of proceeds from the rental or purchase of over 20 featured titles to Black Opportunity Fund to help support our mandate of improving socio-economic outcomes for Black Canadians.

The curated titles, highlighting Black talent and Black stories, include: Big George Foreman, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Boomerang, Brother, Coach Carter, Creed, Fences, Judas and the Black Messiah, Just Mercy, King Richard, Love & Basketball, Malcolm X, Moonlight, NOPE, Remember the Titans, Selma, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Stomp The Yard, The Blackening, The Color Purple, The Equalizer, Think Like a Man, and Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody.

This innovative partnership is an amazing opportunity for everyone to be a part of our mission, while showcasing cinema that celebrates the richness of Black stories and talent.

Let’s watch, and give back together! Help make a difference.
For more details about the initiative, visit https://www.primevideo.com/giveback  

#WatchToGiveBack #BlackHistoryMonth #WeBackBlack #AmazonPrimeVideo #Donate

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BLCK VC Canada

 

 

The Black Opportunity Fund, in partnership with BLCK VC, came together in September to celebrate the launch of BLCK VC Canada! An exciting milestone for Canada’s growing Black venture community and BLCK VC’s first non-US chapter! Kudos to the many partners who came together to make this happen, including BOF’s Executive Director, Craig Wellington who was a panelist at the event. The establishment of BLCK VC Canada formalizes a community that has been flourishing for several years and will continue to serve as a central hub for even more Black-led and Black-focused venture funds, accelerators, players, founders, and more.

Visit the link to learn more https://www.blckvc.org/

Featured Panelists and attendees

  • Frederik Groce, Co-Founder, BLCK VC and Deal Lead, Wellington Management
  • Isaac Olowolafe, Managing Partner, BKR Capital
  • Kim Furlong, CEO of CVCA
  • Sunil Sharma, Managing Partner, techstarts Toronto Accelerator
  • Upkar Arora, CEO of Rally Assets
  • Craig Wellington, Executive Director of the Black Opportunity Fund
  • Abdullah Snobar, CEO of DMZ Ventures
  • Wils Theagene, Head of CDPQ’s $250M Diverse Founders Fund

BLCK VC Canada Co-Founders

  • Ahmed Ismail, Wellington Management
  • Josh Olowafe, CIBC Innovation Banking
  • Abdel Ali, Founder of Kiwi Charge (EV Charging Start-up)
  • Derrick Raphael, Co-Founder and CEO of ICON Talent Partners

 

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Black Opportunity Fund – Year 3 Highlights video

We invite you to view our BOF Year 3 Highlights Video

Three years ago, BOF was born out of a collective vision of dismantling longstanding systemic inequities in access to capital. Since then, we’ve achieved remarkable milestones and catalyzed positive ripples of change.

BOF has created a disruptive new Black-community-led philanthropic approach, that supports social, cultural, and economic empowerment of Black communities across Canada. BOF prioritizes initiatives around education & youth, healthcare, women+ gender, criminal justice, entrepreneurship, arts & culture, and affordable housing.

We recognize that a systemic problem cannot have a single answer. So BOF is part of an ecosystem that, together, is committed to interrupting systemic racism. As we celebrate this milestone, we’re not just looking back at our accomplishments, but forward to the future we’re shaping together.

To learn more about BOF’s accomplishments and the work ahead:

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BOF donation propels the creation of the Hon. Lincoln Alexander’s bust at Queen’s Park

BOF is very pleased to announce the kickoff of the artistic process for the creation of a bust of the Hon. Lincoln M. Alexander, that will be placed on permanent display inside the Queen’s Park Legislative Building in January of 2024, coinciding with the 10th anniversary of January 21st being declared annually as Lincoln Alexander Day in Ontario.

Black Opportunity Fund is proud to be supporting this important legacy project and funding the work of award-winning artist Quentin VerCetty. Thanks to the leadership for this project by the #LincBustCommittee led by Rosemary Sadlier OOnt – Champion of Black History Month and @License2Learn with Zeib Jeeva, O.Ont. .

This will be the first statue of a Black person ever displayed at Queen’s Park, and it will be part of the Queen’s Park educational tours. Visibility is Possibility. An interview with me and artist Quentin from his studio, will air this evening on CTV News. September 20th is the date in 1968 when Linc was sworn in as Canada’s first Black member of Parliament. September 20th was also the date in 1985 when Lincoln Alexander was sworn in as Canada’s first Black Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

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CAREERS AT BOF – FINANCE & BUSINESS PROGRAMS SPECIALIST

Black Opportunity Fund (BOF) is seeking an energetic and motivated team player to fill the position of Finance & Business Programs Specialist.

Black Opportunity Fund is a community-led registered Canadian Charitable organization, whose mandate is to dismantle anti-Black racism by establishing a sustainable pool of capital to fund Black led businesses and Black led not for profits and charities, in order to improve the social and economic well-being of Canada’s Black communities.

Reporting to the Director, Finance & Operations, this position will support full cycle finance, accounting and operations as well as supporting, facilitating and tracking funding disbursements to grant and loan recipients, tracking metrics and reporting for funded businesses and community organizations. In addition to a background in accounting, the ideal candidate possesses related experience in a direct customer facing role in a banking or other financial institution.

For more information, please visit Welcome to Hudson Group Jobs

 

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BLACK OPPORTUNITY FUND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR NAMED TO THE 2023 TOP 100 CANADIAN PROFESSIONALS

Black Opportunity Fund is proud to announce that Executive Director, Craig Wellington has been selected as one of Canada’s Top 100 Canadian Professionals for 2023.

Craig Wellington is a strong believer in the Swahili principle of Ubuntu— ‘I am because we are’ — that when all communities are allowed to achieve their potential, everyone is uplifted. That’s why, as executive director of the Black Opportunity Fund (BOF), he’s working to establish equitable, sustainable funding for the social and economic empowerment of Black communities across Canada. He uses his considerable expertise in not-for-profit and community leadership to develop and execute innovative strategies to secure and deploy capital for community good, while always maintaining an anti-oppression lens with a focus on community engagement and partnerships. Prioritizing initiatives around youth and education, women and gender, criminal justice, entrepreneurship, health, and arts and culture, BOF seeks to elevate the outcomes for generations of Black Canadians.

Read the full feature article from Top 100 Canadian Professionals Magazine.

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3RD ANNIVERSARY VIRTUAL TOWNHALL

In celebration of Black Opportunity Fund’s 3rd anniversary, join the BOF team for a virtual townhall on June 29th!

Open to all community members and supporters, the BOF team will deliver updates on the progress made over the last 3 years, as well as discuss upcoming goals and initiatives. Attendees will be able to ask questions and provide feedback on initiatives and priorities directly.

Date: Thursday June 29th, 2023
Time: 6:30 PM EST

As an organization, BOF Is committed to transparency and meaningful community engagement. This work cannot be fully realized without community, and many perspectives are necessary to ensure BOF fulfills its mandate to serve and empower Canada’s diverse Black communities.

To attend, please register at https://share.hsforms.com/1ambbh6yORneLd0L9oZ8Ncg4xq13

See you there!

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BOF & Black Life: Untold Stories – Public Engagement and Educational Impact Campaign

Black Opportunity Fund is a National Community Impact Partner to the Black Life Impact Foundation, taking part in the Black Life: Untold Stories – Public Engagement and Educational Impact Campaign a ground-breaking initiative to deepen public knowledge about Canada’s Black history.

Launching March 21st, 2023 – the International Day for the Elimination of Racism, the campaign is centered around the Black Life: Untold Stories, an 8-part documentary series that will take audiences on a journey through more than 400 years of history, highlighting the vital role that Black people in Canada have played in shaping our country. Presenting an unvarnished examination of the idea of Canada as a sanctuary, while also focusing on contemporary issues affecting the Black community. The series will premiere in the coming 2023-24 broadcast year on CBC and CBC Gem.

The campaign will deepen and expand the series’ reach beyond the tv broadcasts, with an educational learning hub and digital museum, live viewing events, and cultural products. Funds will support cross-country engagement events.

For more information, please visit: www.blacklifeseries.com

If you would like to help support this great initiative, donate at:

https://www.canadahelps.org/en/dn/72659

 

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BOF Arts & Culture and Criminal Justice Grant Info Webinar

Black Opportunity Fund is pleased to be launching another grant program for Canadian Black-led, Black-serving and Black focused not-for-profits and charities (B3s) through funding support from the TD Ready Commitment. BOF is providing grants in support of 2 program streams – Arts and Culture, and Criminal Justice.

To provide support to potential applicants and answer questions about the program, BOF hosted an information webinar on Thursday, March 30th, from 6:30 – 7:30 PM EST.

During the 1-hour webinar, members of the BOF Programs team reviewed the program, including eligibility and adjudication criteria, and hold an open Q&A for prospective applicants to address questions.

View the recording of the information session from Thursday, March 30th – https://youtu.be/iW2Hxd2jh4A

Grant applications open : Monday April 3, 2023

Link to application, link goes live April 3, 2023

https://bof.smapply.io/

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Halifax Declaration Survey

As proud partners of the Fondation Michaëlle Jean Foundation (FMJF), we invite your participation in the Halifax Declaration research survey, open until March 28th 2023.
The 2022 National Black Canadians Summit (NBCS) hosted in Halifax by the Michaëlle Jean Foundation, concluded with a historic declaration demanding justice and equality for Black Canadians and people of African descent and provides a call to action and demands to various government bodies and Canadian institutions, highlighting issues such as housing, justice, healthcare, education, and media and arts.
Black Opportunity Fund is pleased to be supporting the dissemination and analysis of this survey along with Argyle PR and the Network for the Advancement of Black Communities (NABC). The data gleaned from the survey will be used to validate the calls to action made in the NBCS July 2022 and to inform policy and programming activities aimed at improving the well-being of Black Canadians. Through this exercise, a mapping of the organizations that are doing vital work in Canada to activate and advance the calls for action made in the Declaration will be developed.
It is imperative that we hear from as many voices as possible, and we encourage you to share this post with your networks.
The survey takes approximately 5-15 minutes to complete.
The deadline for survey responses is March 28th. Please provide your input at https://bit.ly/spcn-nbcsHS.

 

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Call for adjudicators – Arts and Culture, Criminal Justice Grant

The Black Opportunity Fund is seeking volunteer Adjudicators to review and adjudicate applications for its upcoming granting program, which is provided through funding from the TD Ready Commitment. The upcoming BOF grant program launching in March of 2023, will have the following two program streams:

1) Arts and Culture
2) Criminal Justice

You should consider a nomination if:

– You are a Black individual, living in Canada, with an understanding of anti-Black racism and systemic racism and its effects on Black communities in Canada
– You can apply funding criteria and make fair, unbiased recommendations
– You have a deep sense of understanding barriers facing Black not-for-profits and charities in Canada
– You have previous experiencing reviewing or adjudicating grant applications, OR previous experience in Black community focused organizations
– You are bilingual (an asset!)

Self-nominations are accepted, please only consider nominating someone else with their consent! As this is a national grant program, BOF encourages applications from all regions of Canada.

BOF is committed to the fulsome inclusion of the Black Canadian experience through diverse representation; it is strongly encouraged that individuals from all backgrounds and identities consider applying.

What to Expect:

Adjudicators will be required to participate in a mandatory virtual orientation. Individuals should expect to volunteer up to 30 hours of their time before April 30th, 2023.

To apply, visit [Link]

The Grant Program will be open for applications in early March.

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Black Opportunity Fund Submits Proposal for Black-Led Philanthropic Endowment Fund

Black Opportunity Fund (BOF) is pleased to have recently submitted its proposal to administer the Government of Canada’s Black-Led Philanthropic Endowment Fund — a sustainable pool of capital to fund Black-led, Black-serving, and Black-focused (B3s) non-profits and charities across the country. Through this fund, the Government will provide one organization with stewardship of over $190M dedicated to improving socio-economic outcomes for Black Canadians.

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BOF Partners with DoorDash to Launch #BlackFoodEnergy Grant Program for Black Restaurant Entrepreneurs

Black Opportunity Fund (BOF) pleased to announce our newest launch of our grant program for Black Restaurant Entrepreneurs. This program is made possible through funding support from DoorDash.

With their ongoing commitment to helping level the playing field for Black Entrepreneurs, DoorDash is partnering with Black Opportunity Fund to provide #BlackFoodEnergy grants of $10,000 to Canadian Black-Owned Restaurants who are focused on innovation within the food industry.

Black Opportunity Fund partners strategically with community organizations, businesses, philanthropic organizations, and government to provide Black-led community organizations, and government to provide Black-led community organizations and Black-led businesses with the capital and other resources they need to build capacity and to fulfill their their mandates.

#BlackFoodEnergy is an extension of the DoorDash Entrepreneurship & Access Program, which offers additional support for restaurants on the DoorDash platform owned by women and people of colour.

#BlackFoodEnergy specifically celebrates, amplifies, and supports Black Chefs and Black-Owned restaurants and the amazing things they are serving up in neighbourhoods across Canada.

For more information about the program, please visit:.

https://blackopportunityfund.ca/funding-programs/blackfoodenergy-restaurant-grant/

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BOF Year 2 Highlights

Black Opportunity Fund (BOF) is pleased to have achieved the milestone of 2 years. We have made significant progress in fulfilling our mandate in a relatively short time, and positively impacted the communities we serve. BOF has provided philanthropic grants to Black led and Black serving non-profits and charities across the country, and provided capacity-building support and funding to Canadian Black businesses. We are proud to highlight some of our key partnerships and programs as well as the Black led organizations that have benefited from our support.

Eradicating the impacts of systemic anti-Black racism will take many years, but we are dedicated to continuing to do our part to help shorten the journey.

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The Dr. Vibe Show™: The Morning Vibe™ – August 19, 2022

On June 29, 2022, Walmart Canada announced today a partnership with Black Opportunity Fund and SickKids Foundation’s Black Experience @ SickKids Strategy, supporting health equity for the Black community, their families and in particular to improve health outcomes for Black Canadian children affected by and living with Sickle Cell Disease across Canada.

A powerfully insightful conversation on the Dr  Vibe Show with Dr. Isaac Odame , Head of Haemotology at Sick Kids, BOF Executive Director, Craig Wellington and Ingrid Wilson, CHRL, CMS  , Director of Diversity Inclusion & Culture at Walmart Canada, discuss the impact this partnership will have on Canada’s Black communities.

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BOF June 29, 2022 Townhall

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend our virtual townhall last Wednesday! We were so pleased with the turnout and the feedback from our community members and thrilled to have shared some updates on our Sickle Cell Disease partnership with SickKids and Walmart Canada, some of our recipients of our Education and Health Grant program with TD and the work we do with BMO, National Bank and the Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce to support Black Entrepreneurs.

If you missed our townhall, you can watch the recording in full here: https://youtu.be/MCRP8_DDPIw

As always, our commitment is to serve and empower Canada’s diverse Black communities and we look forward to our progress ahead.

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Black health Matters: Tackling Sickle Cell Disease with SickKids

BOF and SickKids have partnered to make a difference against a painful condition disproportionally experienced by people of African descent that can also place considerable financial burden on families: Sickle Cell Disease. On World Sickle Cell Day, June 19, 2022, BOF and SickKids announced their shared goal to achieve better outcomes for children living with the most common genetic disease affecting the Black communities. First, we’ll achieve this by helping SickKids make medication easier and safer to take at home via a SickKids-developed technology called a capsule shredder, which will be distributed across Canada. Second, we are establishing together the Sickle Cell Disease Patient Amenities Fund at SickKids, to help over hundreds of patient families with costs not covered by government, now and in the future. Better health outcomes for Black kids. It’s happening here.

Please donate.

BOF Grants Program for Health and Education

We’ve launched our Grant Program for Education and Health with the help of @TDbank ’s generous funding.  This grant program was developed to help fund Black-led, Black-serving and Black-focused not-for-profits and charities, who are leading impactful initiatives in the key areas of health and education. We are accepting applications for this grant until March 31st.

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Great news for Canada’s Black entrepreneur community.

In collaboration with Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce, BOF launches the Black Entrepreneur Program! This program provides a unique wrap around support, including non-repayable funds for Black Entrepreneurs who have been unable to access traditional funding. A huge thanks to CIBC & CIBC Foundation for kickstarting this program with a generous donation!