BACEL – Empowering Canadian Black Entrepreneurs
The pandemic has disproportionately impacted Black Canadians economically in employment and entrepreneurship. Even before 2020, minority and newcomer populations faced structural barriers to starting a small business, pursuing self-employment or finding work.
It’s time to change the trajectory of Black business and economics, with the Black African and Caribbean Entrepreneurship Leadership (BACEL) Training Program. BACEL combines the success of the BBPA’s existing programs with business and life skills training. Through rigorous evaluation, we’ll demonstrate the economic benefits of delivering culturally appropriate, trauma-informed entrepreneurial skills training to marginalized communities.
The Government of Canada’s Future Skills Centre funds the BACEL Training Program. FSC invested $1.5 million in the program.
Who is BACEL for?
The nationwide BACEL program serves Black entrepreneurs needing additional business and life skills training. This non-traditional look at entrepreneurship takes an intersectional lens to meet the needs of:
- Women and gender diverse people
- Low-income Canadians
- Official Language Minority Communities (OLMCs)
- People with disabilities
- Other groups who are marginalized
- Provide access to skills, networking and mentorship for 400-plus Black entrepreneurs over 20 months to strengthen the Black business community.
- Meet Black businesses’ emerging business and life skill development needs across Canada.
- Support and address identified barriers such as access to capital and networks, and skills gaps, among others.
- Develop a robust training program aimed at eliminating achievement gap and helping Black entrepreneurs grow and succeed.
- Run a national online training program with skilled, professional course facilitators and instructors.
- Develop and conduct a thorough evaluation process to measure program effectiveness and generate an evidence-based model of entrepreneurship leadership training.
Measurement, a key BACEL component, involves evaluating its metrics and feedback to determine future training’s best approaches. Over 20 months, we’ll assess:
- entrepreneurial knowledge
- skills and experience at the session’s beginning and the end
- short-term impacts on skills, attitudes and knowledge
- objective (financial literacy tests) and subjective (self-efficacy, entrepreneurial intent, satisfaction) factors to better understand how entrepreneurship training affects skills development
- factors associated with readiness to learn, such as self-confidence
- the needs of Black entrepreneurs, particularly women
- how training fuels venture creation and traditional employment
- the number and diversity (age, ethnicity, immigrant status, socio-economic status, education) of applicants, participants and graduates
- lived experiences and narratives to better understand entrepreneurship’s meaning in the Black community
- gender and other dimensions to shed light on factors influencing career choices and pathways
- social networks and counselling on perceptions of success
BACEL is open to Black entrepreneurs 16 years of age or older.
This program is intended for entrepreneurs who identify as Black, African, African Canadian or Afro-Caribbean.