What is the ABH grant initiative?
Anastasia Beverly Hills pledged 1 million dollars in June dollars towards the fight against social injustice. We vowed to remain constant and vocal supporters of equality, and we vowed to use our platform and our privilege to amplify the voices of marginalized groups that deserve to be heard.
How will the money be allocated?
We began with a combined donation of $100,000 to The Innocence Project, The NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Black Visions Collective, The Marshall Project, and Black Lives Matter. The remainder of the funds across three important categories: mental health (250k), social initiatives (200k), and support for Black-owned businesses (450k).
What inspired you to create this grant initiative?
In June of 2020, we pledged as a brand to use our voice and influence to fight against systemic racism. Listening to considerable feedback, we realized that while speaking out is appreciated, one of the best ways to support a community is to support their thinkers, innovators, and leaders financially. We decided in that moment to pledge 1 million dollars across organizations for mental health, and social initiatives, and of course, the Black-owned business grant to get funding directly to individuals making a difference.
How did you narrow it down to select these eight winners?
The grant committee went through quite a thorough selection process, as the initial phase of the process produced 854 video submissions. Each committee member spent weeks reviewing applicant video submissions and responses to a preliminary questionnaire. They then came together as a group to deliberate on the businesses each member selected as finalists. After thoughtful discussion and consideration, they selected 8 recipients. These business owners articulated solid plans for their businesses, clearly identified their pain points and were able to share how they would execute their plans for growth and/or sustainability if grant money was awarded. What also stood out about the awardees was their commitment to Black community growth, concern for safe and responsible business practices and their openness for mentorship which will hopefully result in accelerated growth for their businesses.
What will your mentorship to the winners entail? What wisdom do you hope to share with them?
Each awardee now has access to our grant committee which is made up of a diverse group of professionals from various industries. They also now have direct access to Anastasia and Claudia Soare who are excited to support them with marketing strategies, brand exposure, access to retailers and any other areas in which they need support. We are looking forward to staying connected with each grant awardee through quarterly check-in meetings and providing additional resources to help take their businesses to the next level. Our hope is that each of them remembers why they started their business and how their incredible products and thoughtful business practices positively impact others. These are some of the reasons our committee was drawn to them and ultimately selected them to receive the grant award. We truly believe they are all walking in their purpose and we are honored to be a part of their journey.