Local Black-owned business thanks nonprofit, ‘BLESS’ fund

[anvplayer video=”5164071″ station=”998122″]

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – In celebration of Black History Month KOB 4 is highlighting a very special nonprofit whose goal is to give back to those mom-and-pop shops.

“One thing about being a Black-owned business, and just in general, is that you learn how to handle adversities at a very early age,” said Ayanna Zahra, owner of Ayanna Denise Skincare. 

Zahra started Ayanna Denise Skin in 2020, right before the pandemic, and right before a new wave of support came for businesses like hers. 

“A lot of people started looking for Black-owned companies and also Black women-owned companies because of all the things that were coming up about,” said Zahra. 

Ayanna’s Skincare line is based on holistic methods that cater to specific skin needs.  

After your initial consultation with Ayanna, they’ll have you fill out skincare forms to learn more about your skin, then she’ll bring you back to the skincare room for comprehensive skin treatments.

Recently her business got some much-needed help from a special nonprofit. 

“We initially raised $8,000, helped out a couple dozen families. And we said, look, there’s some power to this, you know, we have community, we can build community, we can make community better. And that’s when the Albuquerque BLESS fund started,” said Jay Wilson.  

Jay Wilson started the Albuquerque Black Economic Security and Solidarity Fund, or “BLESS” fund in 2020. 

Now, it’s grown to giving grants to 12 local Black-owned businesses. 

“Skincare, everyone doesn’t really necessarily need it all the time. So after the holiday season, there’s always like a little bit of a decline, right? So what the BLESS fund did help me with is get through that hump,” Zahra said.  

She says representation matters, especially when applying for grants, and to know there’s a local option is another step in the right direction. 

“The BLESS fund was actually a blessing for me,” said Zahra. 

If you’d like to book your own skincare treatments, click here.