WACO, TX — The president of the Texas Association of African American Chambers of Commerce paid a visit to Waco's local chamber with a surprise $5,000 donation to empower local minority-owned businesses and support economic development in communities of color.
"Black local owned businesses need that support, they need that help and the timing of that money to be put in the programs is absolutely awesome and phenomenal," says John Bible, the president of the Cen-Tex African American Chamber of Commerce.
The money is set to fund the CTAACC's equity fund, workforce development programs and more.
"We want businesses to know that they're not out there alone. They have help, they have organizations that they can actually reach out to and whatever their needs are we can make sure we assist them in," says Bible.
Bibles say the state chamber president commended them on their community outreach and would like them to start hosting workshops to help other chambers statewide.
"That's why we put all the effort and hard work each and every day to ensure that they're successful cause they're a big part of our community," says Bible.
On the list of minority-owned businesses that may benefit from the donation is Papa Jack's BBW in East Waco.
"You know East Waco, we don't get a lot of recognition, but we're East Waco proud, at least I am anyway. I really don't look at it as benefiting me, I look at it as benefiting the community," says Kimberly Hicks with Papa Jack's BBQ.
The restaurant continues a take-out-only service for its ribs, collard greens and other BBQ favorites and hopes to open a patio area soon.
"I'm very thankful for the chambers, without them the black businesses would have a very hard time so I appreciate them supporting us," says Gerald Hicks, the owner of Papa Jack's BBQ.
Papa Jack's is also thankful to the community for supporting them through the pandemic.
They say the restaurant is only open 3 days a week to ensure their BBQ is served fresh, and any food leftover at the end of the night is boxed up and donated to the homeless.