5 PILLARS OF CFBI
Many mistakenly believe innovation is limited to technology or new inventions, but innovation has so many other applications! The Center for Black Innovation defines innovation as doing things in a new way that leads to improved and mitigating outcomes. To do something differently requires developing an approach, process, product, or strategy. Our approach to innovation encourages imagination, research, and exploration. South Florida’s Black community specifically, and the United States in general, can benefit from new ideas to solve age-old problems. Our programming seeks to accomplish just that.
Economic and Social Mobility
You cannot truly build black startup founders, tech professionals, and innovative black communities without building strong ecosystems that value black culture as an asset and, most importantly, are respected within the broader tech and innovation economy. After building Miami's black tech ecosystem from the ground up, we shared what we learned with others around the nation through our Black Ecosystem Builders Fellowship.
The Center for Black Innovation is determined to increase the propensity of Black-owned businesses by creating supportive ecosystems that include business infrastructure education, access to capital, facilitating knowledge-sharing, and expanding opportunities for mentorship and consultancy. Entrepreneurship in addition to business ownership—particularly employee-driven enterprises—are crucial in developing a thriving business community and essential to eliminating the racial wealth gap in the United States. CFBI’s mission is to remove the racial wealth gap through targeted interventions focused on increasing the bottom line for Black business owners while expanding hiring opportunities for Black job seekers.
Since our inception as Code Fever Miami, we have trained young people in digital literacy, intro to STEM, computer programming, and how to navigate a startup ecosystem as a person of color. We are proud that over 4000 students have had a direct touchpoint with one of our programs. Through a partnership with NBCUniversal in 2017, we built a platform for the Grinch Movie video game that introduced over 3 million students and educators to their first lesson in computer programming. Due to COVID-19, we shifted our focus to provide tutoring and academic support services at the intersection of digital and socially distant learning for middle and high school students.
Family and Community
A community can’t have a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem and effective educational offerings without cohesive family dynamics. The Center for Black Innovation seeks to provide improved access to services for our community through innovative social interventional programming with the support of our community partners. We embrace a targeted care coordination methodology in assisting families via a "multiple access" approach to self-sufficiency and family success. By maximizing shared resources, we aim to increase community access to necessary services that strengthen families while also providing innovative interventions that improve economic and social mobility instead of simply relying on traditional service provision models.