OICA has a proven ability to reach under-represented populations. We will capitalize on OICA’s unique capacity to inspire people to dream, learn, work and succeed by invoking the philosophy of “self-help” that has been the cornerstone of OICA services for 47 years. Given the proven correlation between self employment and wealth creation, OICA is launching this focused initiative to encourage more African Americans to think like and become entrepreneurs.The Entrepreneurial Mindset Initiative is a contemporary re-birth of a proven legacy for success. OIC of America has trained over 2 million people nationwide since its origin. OICA’s founder, Rev. Leon Sullivan was a force in African American entrepreneurship and self-help when, in 1968, he built Progress Plaza in North Philadelphia —the first black owned shopping center in America . The project was funded by Philadelphia citizens, who invested in Rev. Sullivan’s 10/36 Plan. The plan involved thousands of individuals and families regularly contributing small sums of money to accomplish a shared goal for the benefit of the community.
We will recruit individuals from economically distressed communities. In so doing, we will challenge the notion that people without means cannot thrive in business in our society. While it may be harder for them to achieve success than for those with more, these individuals will demonstrate that they, too, with help, can be business owners, acquire wealth, employ others and contribute to their communities.Services
We will assess each Entrepreneurial Mindset Initiative applicant to determine whether he or she has the skills and abilities that tend to lead to success in starting and operating a business. We will expose participants to subjects critical to the success of a business enterprise. The program elements will adapt based on evidence of what works. In general, the core elements will include: Advisory Services, Hands-on Support, Workshops and Webinars.
The Entrepreneurial Mindset Initiative will be perpetually funded by an endowment which will be raised in two parts. The first $10 million will be raised from the community nationwide through OIC10, a funding initiative designed to turn 1 million, one time, ten dollar contributions into a $10 million endowment. The remaining $90 million is expected to come through “challenge grants” from foundations and interested individuals.