OYA Media Group support Black creatives and entrepreneurs in Canada’s entertainment sector  

Alison Duke

OYA Media Group announces the launch of its sister not-for-profit arm, OYA Black Arts Coalition (OBAC), which will introduce the OYA Scale Up Initiative, an intensive entrepreneurship program designed to support 150 Black-owned businesses based in the Southern Ontario region over the course of three (3) years.

OBAC has been created to expressly address systemic inequities, and nurture viable opportunities for a new generation of dynamic Black creative entrepreneurs in Canada’s film and entertainment sector. The program is funded by the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

OBAC’s application process goes live in the community went live in the community last Tuesday 16th Nov with its first program.

The Business Affairs Bootcamp, and the overall 3 pronged plan is designed by OYA’s award winning team.  OYA Scale Up Initiative speaks to OYA’s tradition of sharing stories centered on Canadian Black perspectives, and establishing a barrier free ecosystem for participants to be successful industry professionals.

OYA Scale Up Initiative, begins in January 2022, and consists of a threefold support process to meet multiple levels of capacity and skillset, including a boot camp, accelerator lab, and master classes, facilitated by the program’s high profile partners.

The initiative comes to OYA on the strength of the company’s impressive industry success to date. This includes the OYA Emerging Filmmakers Program, which over the past three years has supported over 60 young Black creatives with career defining enhancement and opportunities.

Ngardy Conteh-George

OBAC will transform the industry through networking, mentorship and hands-on training, alongside a safe space for experimentation. The program ensures that Black stories and storytellers are well represented in Canada’s film, television and digital media sectors. 

“We are pleased to see our call for participants in the OBAC Scale Up Initiative go live today,” said Ngardy Conteh George, Co-founder – OYA Black Arts Coalition & OYA Media Group. “As a production company that shares stories centered on the Canadian Black lived experience, as created holistically by Black filmmakers, we see the scale up as a game changer and an important means for Black artists, creators and entrepreneurs to step into Canada’s booming entertainment industry with a solid foothold.”

The organization is also co-founded by award-winning film and television producer/director Alison Duke, and Dr. Notisha Massaquoi, a leading Canadian expert in designing equity responsive organizations.

“Congratulations to OYA Black Arts Coalition on going live on this important resource for the Black Community, and the larger Canadian entertainment industry. We are thrilled to be an OBAC partner, and support these tangible solutions toward demystifying industry entry points for a new generation of Black storytellers and stories,” said Karen Bruce,  Executive Director, Women in Film & Television – Toronto.