( ENSPIRE Community Spotlight ) Whiskey Company Raising Money For Historically Underfunded Black Colleges and Universities
ENSPIRE Contributor: Isaac Grad
Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey has announced the launch of its annual HBCU Old Fashioned Challenge. This challenge is an initiative that raises funds for HBCUs or “Historically Black Colleges/Universities”. This year, the goal is to raise 1.4 million dollars, which is equal to one full in-state tuition scholarship per accredited HBCU. The challenge began on January 15th, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and will end on June 19th, Juneteenth.
Uncle Nearest is the top-selling Black-owned spirits brand in the world and chooses to use its success to help others. HBCUs have been historically underfunded by billions of dollars, this discrimination in funding affects these schools and their students greatly. In raising money for these institutions, Uncle Nearest is giving back to its community and shedding light on the unjust funding practices. As well as illuminate the importance of HBCUs and the impact that they have had.
HBCUs have removed many barriers to degree completion and post-graduate success. Their graduates make up 50 percent of Black doctors and attorneys, 40 percent of Black engineers and members of Congress, and 80 percent of Black judges. The importance of these institutions goes beyond just the numbers, they help their students feel like they belong and are supported.
Fawn Weaver, the CEO and founder of Uncle Nearest, funded the college education of Nearest Green’s descendants before having even sold their first bottle of Uncle Nearest. “Every semester, writing those checks brought me immense joy, knowing the significant impact they would have on each student’s life. This same feeling resurfaced when I began writing tuition checks to HBCUs for our Old Fashioned Challenge. It’s an honor, and I hope we can continue this tradition annually with the checks growing larger as the Uncle Nearest whiskey family expands.”
Now through June 19, 2024, the public can participate in the Uncle Nearest HBCU Old Fashioned Challenge by:
- Ordering an Uncle Nearest Old Fashioned at participating bars and restaurants, where one dollar will be donated per cocktail ordered
- Purchasing any bottle of Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey at participating online and brick-and-mortar retail stores, where one dollar will be donated per bottle purchased
- Purchasing an Old Fashioned Bundle through ReserveBar, where two dollars will be donated for every bundle purchased
- Submitting a photo of a homemade Uncle Nearest Old Fashioned to www.oldfashionedcocktail.com, where one dollar will be donated per entry*