Provo businesses donate proceeds to organizations fighting racism

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Sodalicious has remained busy throughout the pandemic as seen in this May 6 photo. The company recently announced that it would donate all its proceeds on June 2 to the National Black Chamber of Commerce. (Preston Crawley)

A handful of Provo businesses have announced they will donate proceeds to organizations helping black communities.

These announcements come after a week full of protests across the country incited by the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.

Mozz, a pizza restaurant on University Ave., will be donating all of June’s proceeds to the cause. “We felt like it was important for us to do something and use our platform and use our privilege as white people to try and do something to help,” Mozz co-owner Jared Neiswender said.

Neiswender said the team chose to donate the whole month’s proceeds rather than just one day’s earnings because they are passionate about the cause. “We’re struggling right now because of COVID, and every day is a question mark, but these are things that are greater than us trying to sell pizza.”

Mozz is still looking for a charity to donate to, but they are looking for groups with integrity and a good reputation who are working to end racism and discrimination.

Sodalicious announced it will donate all the proceeds earned on June 2 to the National Black Chamber of Commerce, an organization that helps black business owners. “Our hearts are just heavy. Our hearts hurt for our friends that are suffering,” Sodalicious CEO Kevin Auernig said.

Auernig said he was struggling with people just posting memes on social media and wanted to take action. “I feel inadequate here. It feels insignificant even doing this,” he said. “This is something that my wife and I can get behind, and this is something I know our employees would be happy to participate in.”

According to Auernig, the Sodalicious customers have responded positively to the decision to donate. Customers can make donations in store in addition to their purchases.

Goodly Cookies in Salt Lake also decided to donate the proceeds from June 2 sales to National Black Chamber of Commerce. “We hope that our donation will help to support black business development within our community,” co-owner Hailee Henson said.

Goodly Cookies’s motto is “Do Good. Eat Good. Love Good.” and the company felt like it should back up its words with actions. “We want to do our best to always love by that motto, and this certainly feels like one of those times,” Henson said.

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