Meet The Woman Behind Elevate & Explore Black Nova Scotia, Inc.
Photo Credit: René Boudreau

Photo Credit: René Boudreau

Meet The Woman Behind Elevate & Explore Black Nova Scotia, Inc.

black-owned business , Canada
Brunno Braga
Brunno Braga Dec 22, 2021

René Boudreau is a Black Canadian woman who has always had a passion for travel. She decided to found Elevate & Explore Black Nova Scotia, Inc., to make an income while making an impact on the wider community in her area, Nova Scotia.

“I absolutely love to travel, and it has been through my travels that I’ve learned so much about myself and those around me,” Boudreau told Travel Noire. “Oftentimes, when traveling outside of Canada, I get asked “Where are you from?” and when I tell people I’m from Nova Scotia, they usually respond with “there are Black people in Nova Scotia!?”

This question inspired her to create a company that highlights African Nova Scotia history and culture while encouraging more Black travelers to visit the province. It all started with a single Instagram post.

Initially, Elevate & Explore Black Nova Scotia offered tours, experiences and retreats. The company has also collaborated with businesses in the NS tourism industry on various influencer opportunities.

Now, the company is in the process of launching a website that will include a page that highlights things to see and do within the province, upcoming events and a Black business directory.

“In the near future, we plan to have rental properties for guests to stay when visiting. We have an Instagram page, @elevateandexploreblackns, where we post content of Black people exploring the province. It is our hope that if more people see themselves represented, they may be more inclined to want to visit,” she said.

The brand has been receiving a tremendous amount of support from the Black community.

“There are so many people who have been engaging with my posts, promoting and attending my events, listening to my ideas and helping out where needed. Knowing I have the love and support from the community behind me is important and through my business, I will continue to promote and collaborate with other local Black-owned businesses as well.”

Boudreau has many reasons to celebrate now, although in the beginning, one of the biggest challenges was accessing funding.

“I didn’t always know where to go to receive financial support and oftentimes when applying for funding my business didn’t meet the criteria.”

The company was accepted into a mentorship program through American Express called Blueprint: Backing BIPOC Businesses, geared towards business owners who are Black, Indigenous, and other minorities. Each business accepted into the program receives a $10,000 grant to put towards their business.

You can learn more and support the brand by following on Instagram: @elevateandexploreblackns.

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