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At Venture Cafe, we believe Black Lives Matter and we stand with the movement.Read our full statement, here.
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VCWS Statement on Racial Equity

Friends, it’s a somber day and I have something serious to share with you today. Let me be absolutely clear where we stand: Venture Cafe Winston Salem and The ACCESS Center for Equity + Success believe Black Lives Matter. We recognize the existence of systemic racism and deeply denounce it. Many of us, as whites, can never fully understand the black experience, but we stand with you. Today and every day. 

We believe that we have a moral responsibility as community builders and conveners to build safe spaces to have difficult discussions – and we know race conversations are some of the most difficult ones to have. 

We believe that innovation is a way to improve the human condition – and the human condition right now can use all the help it can get. 

We are allies and advocates, supporting this imperative work through building bridges and trust, providing direct support for minority businesses through the ACCESS Center for Equity + Success, and putting our money where our mouths are by intentionally choosing to work with amazing partners who are accomplished people of color. 

Through thoughtful and compassionate conversations with our diverse global network, we are working together to identify more opportunities to create positive change – both inside our organization and in our individual communities.

Like a lot of people, we are in the midst of our work. Sometimes we will say things that come out sideways. Sometimes we will just not know because we are still educating ourselves. But other times, like right now, we are on our feet, standing and marching and protesting. Because we believe in the inherent dignity and worth of every single person. 

Over the past three years, we have built a beautiful, strong, inclusive community – and we have had hard conversations. Those conversations are not done and we welcome everyone who is willing to do the hard work they require. 

We are so proud of our city for the ways we’re showing up peacefully and powerfully. For shutting down a racist barber and laying down in the streets led by a 16-year-old girl. 

My wish for each of you and for our community is that we show up for each other with hearts full of love. My heart is broken and full at the same time as we move through this together. 

Stay mighty.