Submitted by Comcast Corporation
Comcast announced a $650,000 commitment to Native Women Lead (NWL), becoming the nonprofit organization’s first and largest corporate partner of its Matriarch Revolutionary Fund, the first-ever impact investment fund in the U.S. focused on established Native women-owned businesses.
Through Comcast’s support, NWL can continue its goal of building a $10 million Matriarch Revolutionary Fund that when fully resourced will help empower 200 Native women-owned businesses at $50,000 - $250,000 each. Comcast’s grant will also support NWL’s broader network of over 20,000 Indigenous women across Turtle Island, or North America, grow their businesses, communities, and environment with values-aligned integrated capital.
“It’s important for us to design capital, tools, and products that meet the needs of Native communities,” said Jaime Gloshay, Co-Founder of Native Women Lead. “As our first corporate partner, Comcast’s grant is truly significant and will help us amplify our work, support our entrepreneurs in reclaiming our narrative, and give us the opportunity to center and uplift the people who are making meaningful change in our communities.”
As business owners, Indigenous women face institutional racism and predatory lending when it comes to accessing capital and federal funding. In 2017, the Native Nations Institute found that the number of Small Business Administration (SBA) guaranteed loans awarded to Native-owned businesses constituted less than 1%.
Native women also experience some of the highest poverty and wealth gaps in the country. According to the Center for American Progress, they are paid 60 cents for every $1 paid to White, non-Hispanic men, yet 66% are their family’s primary breadwinners and economic drivers in their communities.
“Access to capital remains a significant barrier for women entrepreneurs, but is particularly challenging for Indigenous communities,” says Dalila Wilson-Scott, EVP and Chief Diversity Officer of Comcast Corporation and President of the Comcast NBCUniversal Foundation.
We are proud to partner with Native Women Lead to help empower these talented, innovative business owners realize overdue economic opportunities for themselves and their community.
EVP and Chief Diversity Officer of Comcast Corporation and President of the Comcast NBCUniversal Foundation
In addition to the Matriarch Revolutionary Fund, Comcast’s grant will help NWL scale and fund the newly launched Rematriating Economies Apprenticeship (REA) program that will support 10 Indigenous women on a five-month paid apprenticeship toward becoming an emerging fund manager. Following the apprenticeship, participants will also be presented with job placement opportunities at several investment fund companies or firms throughout the United States. The apprenticeship is currently accepting applications for its first cohort through April 10, 2023.
“We want to see our women writing the checks themselves,” said Vanessa Roanhorse, Co-Founder of Native Women Lead.
“I want to see our entrepreneurs thrive – that has been the magic of Native Women Lead. Being able to see someone succeed closes that belief gap in oneself and empowers one another to continue to push and take this journey of entrepreneurship with that curiosity, with that awe, with that wonder, and to be open to the challenges of business ownership,” Jaime Gloshay added.
NWL was founded in 2017 to inspire innovation by investing in Indigenous women entrepreneurs. Today’s grant announcement continues Comcast’s multi-year partnership with the organization and is part of Project UP, Comcast’s $1 billion commitment to reach tens of millions of people in order to advance digital equity and help create a future of unlimited possibilities.
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is one of the nation's largest video, high-speed Internet and phone providers to residential customers under the XFINITY brand and also provides these services to businesses. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures and Universal Parks and Resorts.
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