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Organic and Natural Health Association partners with Williams-Franklin Foundation for HBCU Health Scholarship Education Fund

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To open more opportunities in the natural products industry for students and graduates of historically Black colleges and universities, Organic and Natural Health Association announced a new partnership with the Williams-Franklin Foundation during its annual conference held virtually on Jan. 27-28.

As part of a new partnership with the Williams-Franklin Foundation, Organic and Natural Health will help raise a minimum of $50,000 for the Foundation over the next five years to support education expenses for students attending historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU). The money that is raised will be held in a designated fund for the industry called “Organic and Natural Health Scholarship Fund.”

Organic and Natural Health, a leader in diversity and inclusion initiatives within the natural products industry, has also committed to support networking opportunities for HBCU students, graduates and natural health executives with the purpose of igniting internships and career opportunities, while helping to create a more diverse and inclusive industry.

“This is an Organic and Natural Health initiative, but it’s not ours to own,” said Karen Howard, executive director of Organic and Natural Health. “We want to make this an industry-wide initiative for diversity and inclusion, and we want it to be as big and as noteworthy as what Vitamin Angles has achieved for dietary supplement distribution to countries in need. Exposure to our industry is the biggest barrier to lack of diversification in our organizations. Together, as an industry, we can proactively work to change this dynamic.”

The Williams-Franklin Foundation is a 501(c)(3) incorporated nonprofit that provides academic scholarships, business/career networking, and mentoring opportunities to HBCU students with extreme financial need. It is led by husband and wife team Dwight and LaShelle (Williams) Franklin, both HBCU graduates who used their own seed money to launch the foundation in 2014. In a short time their organization has raised thousands of dollars that have impacted the lives of many HBCU students.

“Karen’s initiative and leadership with introducing Williams-Franklin Foundation is really valuable, because our ultimate goal is to help students graduate with minimum debt and maximum opportunities,” said Dwight Franklin. “We are looking forward to this partnership and providing our students opportunities to succeed within the natural products industry,” added LaShelle (Williams) Franklin.

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

Source: Organic and Natural Health Association

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