Protests sparked by the deaths of unarmed Black civilians at the hands of police officers has caused a new conversation on race relations in the United States. The new dialogue has forced many major corporations to release statements standing up against racial injustice and taking responsibility for underserved black and minority employees. Now Google and Visa are the latest companies releasing new initiatives focused on social change.
Visa announced this week that it will be creating new $100,000 grant program aimed toward Black women-owned small businesses across the country as a part of its $50 million global commitment to small businesses. The initiative is in partnership with iFundWomen and will launch at the end of June by awarding 10 $10,000 grants to Black women entrepreneurs looking to expand their business. Grant recipients will also receive additional resources including networking opportunities and mentoring with private coaches.
“Small businesses on the frontlines of the global economy deserve extraordinary support in this extraordinary time,” said Al Kelly, CEO and chairman of Visa in a press statement according to Businesswire. “We are putting our network to work to help 50 million businesses globally not only survive, but also to thrive, along with the communities they serve.”
Google has also made an announcement this week regarding doing more for social justice by giving $1 billion in ad grants for various nonprofit organizations tackling COVID-19 and issues surrounding racial injustice in light of protests occurring around the nation. Some of the organizations that have received ad grants are the NAACP Legal Defense, United Negro College Fund, Houston Food Bank, Equal Justice Initiative, and Rethink Mental Illness.
“Since 2003, ad grants has provided nonprofits with up to $10,000 per month in free Search ads to help them attract donors, recruit volunteers, and promote their missions,” said Michelle Hurtado, Head of Google Ad Grants, in a blog post.
“The increased funding will go toward nonprofits tackling pressing issues like COVID-19 response and recovery–especially in hard-hit developing economies–and fighting racial injustice around the world.”