TORONTO, Ontario (Thursday, December 9, 2021) — In July, the Canadian government, through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, announced a $1-million investment, over three years, for the revitalization of Little Jamaica, located on Eglington Avenue West, from Marlee Avenue to Keele Street.
Last month, with the federal government’s investment funds, provided through the City of Toronto, the Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA) opened its new store-front office, at 1621 Eglinton West, to deliver programs and initiatives to support Black-owned and operated businesses, within the Little Jamaica boundaries.
“The opening of the Black Business and Professional Association office in Little Jamaica comes at an important moment in our city, when many businesses are working to come back, stronger than ever, after a very difficult and challenging year and a half.
“Home to dozens of Black-owned businesses, this area has been deeply impacted by the construction of the Eglinton Crosstown line and COVID-19-related restrictions and closures. We know that local businesses are essential to a healthy and vibrant community. I am proud that as a City we support the work of the BBPA and are able to continue working closely with them to support our small businesses and provide much-needed support,” said Toronto Mayor, John Tory.
The BBPA disclosed in a media release, that it is working alongside the Eglinton Hill, Fairbank Village, Oakwood Village and York-Eglinton Business Improvement Areas and other local organizations, to boost the efforts of entrepreneurs in Little Jamaica, and help them, in these challenging times.
Programs, to help local businesses, and address immediate needs, have begun, including:
1. Shop Talk Thursdays – hosted by a different business each week, on the following topics: technology, enhancing the customer experience, finance, and money management.
2. Web and E-commerce Presence – A Little Jamaica App will be launched and digital media and online marketing created for local businesses. And
3. Business Programs – services will be offered to help with tax filing, business plan development, financial reviews, payroll, business registration and marketing strategies.
“In collaboration with our community partners, the BBPA is committed to maintaining ongoing support for the Little Jamaica community and its businesses with a storefront office, in order to be more accessible to businesses and patrons,” commented Ross Cadastre, President of the BBPA.
The BBPA’s storefront office opens weekdays, from 10:00AM to 4:30PM.