Interview: Connect4Better (Cee4Bee)

Tell us a bit about Cee4Bee

Connect4Better (Cee4Bee) is a three year old charity which sets out to improve the life chances of the minority black Afro-Caribbean living in UK. We want to reduce the statistics surrounding poverty within the Black community and want to see more Black African-Caribbeans breaking the glass ceiling in the corporate world and in business. Using education and available resources within the community, especially with the help of role models, we set out to make a difference and make an impact on the diversity and inclusion agenda by empowering our community.

What inspired you to create this Black British network?

As founders, we looked around us and saw fellow blacks who could thrive and succeed more should guidance and or more opportunities be made available to them. We see a lot of us in low skilled jobs despite good qualifications, more people are been held back in the corporate environment due to known barriers.

This is popular knowledge, recent research shows the Black community is twice as likely to be unemployed, more likely to work in lower paid and lower skilled jobs and are under-represented at senior levels across public sector, less likely to own a home. Black African and Black Caribbean, 2 of the top 5 largest distinct categories ranked as 3rd and 4th groups most likely to be in persistent poverty.  

We were therefore inspired by the fact we are able to contribute our little token to touch people’s life without enormous amount of resources at the start just by providing the right guidance, inspiring role models to provide mentoring, running affordable educational sessions and more.

c4b

What has been the greatest challenge in starting Cee4Bee?

The greatest challenge so far has been building the organisation with volunteers only. Whilst it is great that we have attracted passionate volunteers who have both committed time and finances to build Cee4Bee, there is a limit to the growth and impact possible due to lack of full time resources.

What has been the most rewarding part of starting Cee4Bee?

Receiving feedbacks from attendees have been the most rewarding part of starting Cee4Bee. Multiple people have picked up mentors, picked up new businesses, few have gotten support for their next job interview. One of such feedback reads –

I attended Connect for Better networking event last year. The talk was very inspiring and has motivated me to achieve my goals. I won a book given out – ‘7 keys to winning a CV’ and I’ve gotten a summer internship which would not have been possible without the advice I received on the day. – March 2017 Delegate

Where would you like to see the Cee4Bee in the next 5 years ?

Our 5 year vision is to build an organisation that has a thriving community that is able to target and reach 7,500 BME people with educative resources and having a direct impact on at least 30% of our reach.

How can we find out more and get involved

You can get more information from our website – www.cee4bee.com but also via all of our channels –

info@cee4bee.com

@Connect4Better    – Facebook page/LinkedIn group & page/YouTube

@Cee4Beeuk           – twitter/Instagram

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