Cannabis Noire Corporate Social Responsibility Fund
Sheena M. Roberson, Founder
My name is Sheena Roberson and I am the founder of Cannabis Noire a platform dedicated to creating a space for minorities within the cannabis industry and community. We help minorities and other underrepresented groups access education, training, registration opportunities, and cannabis business support. Our goal is to help create a more inclusive and diverse cannabis industry and community while destigmatizing cannabis patients through strategic re-branding initiatives.
Businesses often invest in creating and supporting their brand, as well as in monitoring the perceptions held by their customers, employees, and the general public. A company’s social responsibility efforts typically factor heavily into these perceptions. Corporate social responsibility is a commitment to do more than just serve the needs and expectations of customers and shareholders by means of investing in the communities and people they affect directly or indirectly. Through corporate social responsibility programs, including responsible business practices, philanthropy and volunteer efforts, cannabis businesses can benefit society while boosting their brand. The Cannabis Noire CSRP is aimed at encouraging companies to be more aware of the impact of their business on the rest of society. Cannabis Noire’s corporate social responsibility is a business approach that contributes to sustainable development by delivering economic, social, and environmental benefits for all.
What the cannabis industry has presented as an area of economic opportunity for most has unfortunately in many cases contributed to the marginalization of some of the country’s most low income and minority residents. In addition to higher rates of overcriminalization, cannabis arrest of minorities and little to no diversity within the cannabis business landscape opportunities for specific demographics to successfully enter the cannabis space become limited. Our focus is to create and support partnerships between communities, nonprofits, coalitions, and cannabis businesses. We aim to foster these relationships between industry and community through a strategic combination of health and wealth-based equity frameworks, creating and supporting partnerships between communities, nonprofits, coalitions, and cannabis businesses. Our vision is that through establishing mutually beneficial relationships we will not only expand on the cannabis businesses’ social license to operate but change the narrative of how the industry has and will impact our neighborhoods.
The Cannabis Noire Corporate Social Responsibility program invests directly into communities and individuals negatively impacted by the war on drugs, underserved demographics, and minority business startups in need of funding, training and education. These services are to not just positively impact communities that have been systemically underserved and oppressed but also help shape the cannabis industry’s narrative in our city. We believe that the Cannabis Noire Corporate Social Responsibility framework, when applied with consideration and strategy, can create and cultivate mutually beneficial relationships between adversely affected neighborhoods and cannabis businesses. Our corporate giving efforts are focused on people experiencing homelessness, hunger relief, minorities, LGBT groups, seniors, and veterans. Prioritizing formerly incarcerated individuals convicted of cannabis-related offenses, as well as their family members and people who live or have lived in communities that were subject to severely higher arrest rates particularly minorities. The CN CSR program is designed to pool money into this fund in an effort to:
1. Medicinal cannabis registration support and education for minorities to safely access the cannabis community
2. Access to start-up capital for minority groups to enter the cannabis industry and related ancillary opportunities including minority farming initiatives
3. Cannabis industry employment training and support
4. Assistance in social justice and criminal justice reform efforts to repair past inequities and address these disparities through education and intentional public policies focused on equity.
We call on Cannabis business leaders to step into the opportunity to not only help rectify the damage that’s been done but improve on existing policies and practices established to promote cannabis equality at all levels of participation. The board of directors for this charitable organization consists of dedicated community partners and cannabis industry professionals committed to changing the cannabis landscape and community relations for the better.
Corporate Social Responsibility Fund
Created to accept financial support and build a robust centralized resource network for returning citizens and those adversely impacted by the criminal justice system, especially as it relates to the overzealous unfounded confinement of citizens for cannabis. It is our hope to ensure that reinvestments are not just made but properly administered and dispensed to community members. Too often than not people of color are used as talking points and presented as monocles of social equity but never offered true equity or tangible resources for their communities. This fund will ensure these misconnections are eliminated and help identify true community liaisons and partners dedicated to supporting communities and actualizing their self proclaimed social equity and diversity precedents are achieved.
How it works:
You invest in the fin and the fund invests in others.
We have identified at risk and in need family and community members who have been adversely impacted by the war on drugs. These groups are then categorized by need and provided sustainability resources through the fund and dedicated community partners.
Who it Helps:
Our target communities include but are not limited to people of color, veterans, and the LGBTQ community. We identify those in need through direct outreach and community partner organizations. A database of program recipients is maintained to track progress, maintain records and ensure efficacy if programming.
Why it works:
Our ability to successfully connect recipients to services and optimize funding and resources has allowed us the ability to provide immediate support and maintain the ability to maintain consistency in the light of the pandemic.
Why it should matter to you:
CSRP fund allows corporations businesses and influencers like yourself that hold substantial ground within the cannabis space the opportunity to truly support more ethical and diverse spaces. As a group that understands the importance of social equity we know you recognize the need for more targeted impactful support.