For many, our newest federal holiday, “Juneteenth,” means a day off to relax. As you kick back to enjoy the long weekend, the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership asks you to consider honoring the day through action to increase economic diversity and inclusion. Keep reading for a few suggestions to make a meaningful impact.
‘Juneteenth’, observed annually on June 19, is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States, originating in Galveston, Texas in 1865. Large cities and small communities commemorate the day in numerous ways with parades, cultural events and historical activities.
The Institute For Entrepreneurial Leadership (IFEL), a non-profit organization that promotes greater inclusion within the entrepreneurial ecosystem, is promoting ‘Juneteenth’ as a day of action in support of the over 3.12 million Black-owned business enterprises in the U.S., according to the latest census data. Here are five ways that you can take action on Juneteenth:
- Purchase goods and services from Black-owned companies.
- Volunteer to use your professional skills to assist a Black-owned business.
- Connect with five (5) new Black people on LinkedIn who are in your industry/profession.
- Attend a ‘Juneteenth’ cultural celebration.
- Educate yourself about the racial wealth gap and expand your knowledge of Black history.
“Juneteenth is a missed opportunity if it just becomes another day off,” says IFEL CEO and Co-Founder Jill Johnson. “Companies and individuals who truly value DEI, should use this as an opportunity to commit to action that leads to economic freedom and inclusion for people who have been historically excluded. More individual action by more individual people leads to systemic change.”
Learn more about volunteer opportunities offered by the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership in support of Black-owned businesses at smallbusinessesneedus.org.