Winnipeg block party aims to highlight Black-owned businesses

By | August 30, 2020

Why wait until Black History Month to support Black-owned businesses in Winnipeg?

That’s the motivation of the organizers of a block party Saturday in St. Vital, which was aimed at celebrating the vibrancy of the community.

A number of Winnipeg’s Black-owned businesses and community organizations took part, including food vendors, a real estate agent, a makeup business and a scooter company.

“Just to get an idea of what your city has to offer — a lot of great things, different cultures and different people,” said Ogo Okwumabua, the co-owner of Zuike Apparel, and one of the organizers of the event.

Ogo Okwumabua and the Black History Month Celebration Committee organized a block party aimed at supporting Winnipeg’s Black community, especially its small businesses. (Thomas Asselin/Radio-Canada)

He worked with the Black History Month Celebration Council to put on the block party to build on the momentum that the Justice For Black Lives rally created.

It’s also an opportunity to celebrate and support Winnipeg’s vibrant and diverse Black community outside of the annual Black History Month events organized each year by the celebration council, Okwumabua says.

He says he hopes to put on block parties much more regularly next year, highlighting Black artists and entrepreneurs.

“We want to make it so we highlight different aspects of our city.”

More from CBC Manitoba:

For more stories about the experiences of Black Canadians — from anti-Black racism to success stories within the Black community — check out Being Black in Canada, a CBC project Black Canadians can be proud of. You can read more stories here.

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