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Beyoncé in concert in Milan 2013

Source: Mondadori Portfolio / Getty

As fans pay tribute to the star in honor of her 39th birthday, Beyoncé announced via her BeyGOOD foundation this week that she will be donating $1 million in additional funds to help small Black-owned businesses.

In July, BeyGOOD teamed up with the NAACP to launch the Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund, which aims to “help strengthen small businesses and ensure economic empowerment for Black businesses” by providing $10,000 grants to businesses–specifically in Atlanta, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and New York–that have been greatly impacted by the pandemic.

The Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund is a tool that provides financial assistance for business owners who were largely failed by the Paycheck Protection Program following the spread of COVID-19.

According to a report from the Small Business Association, 14 percent of businesses chose to identify race in their loan application, and of that group, only 1.9 percent of loans were given to Black-owned businesses. 83 percent were granted to those owned by a white person.

Similarly, Restaurant Business reports that just under 49,000 restaurant companies received PPP loans of $150,000 or more, a measly 130 of which are listed as Black-owned businesses.

Back in April, Beyoncé partnered with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s #startsmall initiative, pledging $6 million towards mental health services for essential workers.
“In our major cities, African-Americans comprise a disproportionate number of workers in these indispensable occupations,” BeyGOOD said in a statement. “They will need mental health support and personal wellness care, including testing and medical services, food supplies and food deliveries, both during and after the crisis.”
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