This social enterprise calls for urgent action to support young people with their business ideas after the pandemic has left many people unsure of their future in an unstable economy and job market.
Held on 22 May, the event will feature a number of inspirational speakers from the business world, including entrepreneurs who have successfully navigated the pandemic. It comes off the back of official figures which found that young black workers have been disproportionately hit during the pandemic, raising concerns that COVID-19 has highlighted inequalities which still exist in the workplace.
Image: Event organiser, Ademola Adeyeba
Statistics from the Office for National Statistics have shown that young black workers suffer from 40% unemployment – three times worse than white workers of the same age. Furthermore, Before the pandemic, between January and March 2020, 10.6% of young white people were unemployed compared with 25.3% of young black people. Nine months later, the unemployment rate among young black people had shot up by 64.4% compared with 17% for their white counterparts, the ONS figures show.
Given these dismal statistics, it has become the mission of 1000 Black Boys to take action and inspire the next generation of young, black entrepreneurs. The social enterprise was founded by Ademola Adeyeba, 41, of Greenford in London, who came to the UK from Nigeria at the age of 9.
Image: Event Speaker, Makeda
Adeyeba’s passion for the project is truly inspiring. He says, “By holding this event we hope to give young entrepreneurs the opportunity to take back control of their lives following an incredibly challenging year.”
Refusing to let these statistics continue, Adeyeba has amassed some fantastic speakers, who he says, “can help give hope to those who are struggling to get motivated in the face of so many challenges facing young people right now.”
One such speaker is Alex Cole, Founder of TIN Smart Social, which aims to tackle digital poverty, fuel poverty and support young black entrepreneurs to start and scale their businesses. Dedicated to helping young people thrive in the business world, Cole states, “My lifelong aspiration has been to put overlooked young people at the heart of creating change.”
TIN Smart Social is a ‘purposeful adVenture builder’, that provides consulting and shared services to help individuals while championing entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial diversity. Working with small start-ups and scale-ups who want to make a social impact, Cole says, “I want to help develop a scalable way to support those into work who, through circumstances beyond their control, find themselves in a tough place they can’t escape from.”
Image: Event Speaker, Alex Cole
Not only does the event feature well-established, adult speakers, but also determined youth that have already benefited from the 1000 black boys programme. Moses, a 14-year-old entrepreneur whose business has been supported during the pandemic through the 1,000 Black Boys mentorship programme, is also included on the bill.
Speaking from an authentic place of testimony, Moses says, “The programme helped me boost my confidence as well when it came to my business. Because beforehand I wasn’t really sure of how to go about it. But now the course has given me more confidence and given me mindset tools to help me in the future.”
The event will take place just three days before the anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. Adeyeba questions whether much has changed since then: “Around a year ago I called on businesses to take meaningful action on their pledges following the death of George Floyd and the marches that took place.
“In that time, we’ve seen statues pulled down and lots of social media activity, but we still haven’t had talk of the reforms I think we need to empower the next generation of black entrepreneurs.”
Tickets are free and attendees can also choose to donate if they wish. Attendees also have the opportunity to purchase a family coaching ticket which includes a 60-minute coaching session for a parent(s) or guardian along with their child.
For more information on the event and to register here.