Ongoing Celebration’s of Black Leaders and Black History after Black History Month

Hill Range via Unsplash

Often when February comes to a close, so does the celebration of Black History Month in Canada. This year we saw extraordinary efforts, workshops, and events that elevated Black womxn, entrepreneurs, and founders.

Events such as Future of Good’s Black Leadership in Social Impact Summit and Tech Summit Black by the Athlete Tech Group amplified Black leaders’ voices and raised critical issues. We listen to conversations about representation in Canada’s growing sectors to reform, making investments in Black founders, and increased awareness about social issues through social media.

In a year of turbulence, from disproportionate effects of COVID-19 on Black communities to ongoing social justice issues, community gatherings and virtual events focused on Black wellness, joy, emancipation, and futures. This year, we’ve reflected on our learnings throughout the month and are proud to feature this overview of learning and unlearning resources, videos, and profiles of Canadian voices.

At Venture for Canada, we are committed to the advancement of entrepreneurship in the Black community. Therefore, we find it important to feature the achievements of our Black community members and the impact they’ve made. Being vocal about our commitment is part of an initiative that our community members have asked us to do as accountability. Read our 2020 Impact Report to learn more about how we commit to advancing anti-racing and all of our diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging efforts.

Our Recap of Events, Resources, and Upcoming Events:

Articles and Reports:

Book recommendations by VFC’s Strategic Partnerships and Social Impact Manager: 


The Skin We’re In: A Year of Black Resistance – Desmond Cole

“In his 2015 cover story for Toronto Life magazine, Desmond Cole exposed the racist actions of the Toronto police force, detailing the dozens of times he had been stopped and interrogated under the controversial practice of carding. The story quickly came to national prominence, shaking the country to its core and catapulting its author into the public sphere. Cole used his newfound profile to draw insistent, unyielding attention to the injustices faced by Black Canadians on a daily basis.”

Cole’s puncturing  Canadian’s naive assumptions of a post-racial nation chronicles 2017’s struggle against racism in this country in light of Canada’s 150th celebration. 

So You Want to Talk About Race – Ijeoma Oluo

In this New York Timesbestseller, Ijeoma Oluo offers a hard-hitting, user-friendly examination of race in America. Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to “model minorities” in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race and racism and how they infect almost every aspect of American life.

“Oluo gives us–both white people and people of colour–that language to engage in clear, constructive, and confident dialogue with each other about how to deal with racial prejudices and biases.” National Book Review

Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present – Robyn Maynard

Robyn Maynard provides readers with the first comprehensive account of nearly four hundred years of state-sanctioned surveillance, criminalization and punishment of Black lives in Canada. Angela Davies says, “Robyn Maynard’s meticulously-researched and compelling analysis of state violence challenges prevailing narratives of Canadian multiculturalism and inclusion by examining how structures of racism and ideologies of gender are complexly anchored in global histories of colonization and slavery. This book should be read not only by those who have a specific interest in Canadian histories and social justice movements but by anyone interested in the abolitionist and revolutionary potential of the Black Lives Matters movement more broadly.”

Black History Month Library of Free Readings – Is a publicly accessible and free list compiled by activists and community members during the Black Lives Matter protest. The content solely belongs to the authors, and the list is accessible to anyone on the internet. Please use it at your own discretion. 

Venture for Canada is a national charity that fosters entrepreneurial skills and mindset in young Canadians. To be entrepreneurial is to act upon opportunities to create value for others. The resourcefulness of Canadians is essential to overcoming our country’s greatest challenges. Venture for Canada is a catalyst of systemic social change by equipping young Canadians to build a more prosperous and inclusive society.

That means all Canadians. Read our 2020 Impact Report to learn more about our focus in advancing anti-racism and all of our diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging efforts. 

Are you a motivated recent grad looking to enter the workforce at a startup with an entrepreneurial mindset? Fellowship applications have been extended to March 4th! Apply now.

Juanita Lee Garcia is the Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships and Social Impact. Creator of solutions for...