National Black Business Month highlights entrepreneurship, focus on business growth

SALISBURY, Md.- Shana Ellis is the self-proclaimed queen of all things custom.

Her love for crafting and desire to become her own boss turned a side gig into a career, as she’s now the owner of Dreams To Reality Creations in Salisbury.

August is National Black Business Month; a time to highlight, support, and provide them a platform to expand.

“I have ADD so I struggle with staying on task with one thing and not becoming bored with it, so having a regular job where I have report and be in a very structured environment generally doesn’t work well for me,” Ellis said.

“The name for my business came in where I would think about things that I wanted to do and begin to process and formulate how to make that become real and in my hand.”

According to the Brookings Institution,  96% of black-owned businesses are sole proprietorships just like Ellis.

This potentially makes it harder for them to get access to capital depending on their financial standing. “I used my regular 9-5 job and saved to invest into my business. That’s how I began,” Ellis said.

That’s where local resources like Faith Over Fear Economic Empowerment Inc. are stepping in.

The non-profit focuses on visibility and sustainability for black-owned businesses. “We provide resources such as how to get your business plan going, funding that comes through the federal and state governments, and point them in the direction of resources in the area,” Faith Over Fear Founder Angela Morton said.

“I was very fortunate that through Faith Over Fear and the connections with meeting different people that I actual came into a order that paid my monthly salary at my job in one order,” Ellis said.

From T-shirts to coasters, If you ask for it Ellis makes it.

As her business continues growing she wants to encourage others. “Even when it feels like it’s kind of not going the right direction, just take a break but come back. Come back and be consistent with showing up for yourself and it will work out,” Ellis said.

To find out more about Faith Over Fear, click here 

To find out more about Dream to Reality Creations, click here

Categories: Business, Education, Local News, Maryland, Money, Open For Business