The Black Collective 845 held a back-to-school and school supply “shopping experience” on August 30 to benefit local youth who have pushed to continue their studies through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The event was held at The Office, at 400 Broadway in Newburgh, from 12 to 4 p.m.
Beforehand, parents, service providers, and community members shared clothing sizes for those in need. The Black Collective 845 asked people to donate gently used apparel like shirts, hoodies, shorts, sandals, dresses and more. These items have been collected since June.
The Black Collective is made up of eight Newburgh businesses including Prayer and Hustle, Playmakers League, Shot My Basic and The Grind App, to name a few.
The collective was founded by Lamar Walker and Keisha Hall in May of this year.
“We knew that we had to come together as a team, as black individuals and black business owners in the area,” said Hall. “We help bring together our people and build the wealth in our community and keep it circulating.”
Walker and Hall wanted to “reward them [the children] for the year they have gone through.”
“Growing up around here I always wanted to do something to give back,” said Walker. “There’s a lot going on right now with the pandemic and it’s the perfect opportunity to put something together and give back to the community.”
The Boys and Girls Club also donated their van to help assist in picking up people from Project Life and other areas to give them the opportunity to receive clothing and supplies.
In addition to community members donating clothing and supplies, local artists, like True 2 This Apparel, also supplied items from their clothing lines.
“Everyone deserves something nice,” said Hall. “So why not do it in a way that makes them feel really special because they deserve it.”
This was the first of many initiatives the Black Collective 845 plans to do this year. They hope to do similar drives as the one on Sunday, as well as start scholarship funds.
Their next initiative is to create a fund to help assist a Newburgh resident and aspiring business owner in obtaining an LLC.
People would apply via email with information about their business, including how their business would give back to the community. They are planning to kickstart this at the end of 2020 and choose a new winner each month from then on.
If you would like to make a donation to the Black Collective 845, you can email them at email@example.com.