“This couldn’t have come at a better time,” Brittney Rhodes, founder of Black Girl MATHgic said in an interview with Black Enterprise.
Rhodes is one of the 100 Black women American Express, in partnership with IFundWomen of Color surprised with a $25,000 grant through the “100 for 100” program.
Rhodes is based in Detroit and started the Black Girl MATHgic movement to instill math confidence into Black girls, who are more likely to experience anxiety around math.
She said she plans to use the funds to expand her initiative. “This will help me enhance my website, roll out new marketing initiatives, and publish children’s books,” she said, “I’m excited to be in this network with 99 other amazing women who I can’t wait to build with.”
Last month, American Express announced its commitment of $2.5 million to fund the program, which also includes 100 days of business resources for grant recipients.
The program is a part of the company’s $1 billion plan to promote equity in opportunities among diverse representation in business and communities.
Black women outpace other groups in opening and operating businesses, but trail in securing funding for their enterprises, according to the 2019 State of Women-Owned Business report.
Rhodes’ endeavors are timely given the pandemic’s impact on Black children’s learning, particularly in math. She also hopes that children equipped with basic math confidence can use it to become financially secure.
“I view basic math fluency as the key to closing the racial wealth gap in America. I want people to be able to open up every single door that is available to them so that when things like a pandemic happen, they are not stuck,” she said.
Other grant recipients include Nadirah Simmons, founder of The Gumbo, a media hub that showcases women’s experiences with hip-hop, and Harlem Cycle founder Tammeca Rochester.
See the full list of Black women entrepreneurs in the program here.
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