Natural product industry fund provides scholarships, networking for HBCU students

An industry-wide initiative spearheaded by the Organic & Natural Health Association will help fund scholarships for students, and aims to create a more diverse, inclusive industry.

April 26, 2021

The Organic & Natural Health Association’s partnership with the Williams-Franklin Foundation will open more opportunities in the natural products industry for students and graduates of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU). Specifically, Organic & Natural Health committed to help raise US$50,000 for the Williams-Franklin Foundation--a nonprofit that provides scholarships, networking and mentoring opportunities to HBCU students with extreme financial need--during the next five years. While Organic & Natural Health started the partnership, this is an industry-wide initiate.

In this video podcast, Karen Howard, CEO and executive director, Organic & Natural Health Association, and Brian Terry, national sales manager, Nordic Naturals, join Sandy Almendarez, senior content director, Informa Markets, to discuss the importance of this program and the beneficial ripple effects it will have to improve the natural products industry.

They cover:

  • Why the partnership between the natural products industry and the Williams-Franklin Foundation was kismet.

  • What this type of opportunity would have meant to Terry, who didn’t get an outreach from the natural products industry when he was attending Xavier University of Louisiana, a prestigious HBCU.

  • The resources and support that need to be made available after the industry attracts young professionals from HBCUs.

SupplySide Network 365 is holding an event to support this fundraising effort. On Thursday, April 29 at 4:00 p.m. Eastern, the webinar, “HBCU Organic & Natural Health Scholarship Celebration” will feature scholarship recipients and the Foundation’s founders. Following the webinar, a virtual networking session with the scholarship recipients will provide the opportunity to discuss their ideas for the natural products industry. Nordic Naturals has graciously agreed to match all donations made during this event up to $5,000.

Leaders and companies within the natural products industry who want to donate a tax-deductible gift directly to the Williams-Franklin Foundation’s Organic & Natural Health Scholarship Fund can select “Organic & Natural Health Fund” in the “Who referred you to us?” drop box when donating at:

Listen to Terry discuss Nordic Naturals’ Health Equity & Advocacy Project (HEAP) as well as more about his experience in the natural products industry in the Healthy Insider Podcast, “HEAP takes a leap at vitamin D deficiency in BIPOC community.”

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