By Gerald V. Paul
The Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA) launched its administrative offices, Centre of Excellence and Business Incubator at180 Elm St. recently.
“This juncture is the dawn of a new era for the BBPA as it seeks to continue to leverage and build on the sacrifices and dedication of its pioneers, sponsors, stakeholders, volunteers and partners, coupled with the strength and ability to engage businesses, political leaders and young people for successful transformational change,” BBPA President Pauline Christian told the gathering at the downtown site.
With the opening, BBPA celebrated a milestone, dubbed “Building legacy … celebrating excellence”.
Christian said the centre will facilitate change through its youth entrepreneurial and existing business training programs, coaching, mentoring and mobile community outreach and advisory services, youth employment and apprenticeship connection program, expert panel conferences, workshops and exhibitions, its women entrepreneurs training and development forum, youth leadership development program and its library of reference material and data, relevant to Black business and professional planning and development.
Christian said the BBPA has a history of success in Black business and professional development, noting this is the first time the BBPA will have offices it can call home.
“Undoubtedly, as per its mandate the BBPA has made great strides to address issues of equity and opportunity for the Black community in business, employment, education and economic development.
“In its continued effort to promote and celebrate excellence in the business and professional community, it sees the centre as an expansion of its mandate, beginning at a critical time in the development of Afro-Caribbean Diaspora,” Christian said.
“This is a time when there is a call for unity, strategic collaboration in building awareness of our Black heritage, while creating and sustaining wealth, and promoting the building of a legacy, our future generations can be proud of.”