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SC Senate Redistricting Public Hearing Sessions

The South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee will hold public hearings on redistricting beginning Tuesday, July 27, 2021 in Columbia. The purpose of these public hearings is to receive testimony and gather information about how people see the areas in which they live and what factors need to be considered when the Senate Districts and the Congressional Districts are redrawn, according to a release from the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Those interested in joining the South Carolinians who would like to join the Senate Judiciary Committee’s email list to hear about upcoming meetings can send their name, telephone number and email to redistricting@scsenate.gov. To speak at a hearing, email redistricting@scsenate.gov, call (803) 212-6634 or sign up in person. 

All meetings will be held at 6:30 p.m. The public hearing schedule is as follows:

  • Monday, August 2nd, Greenville (Greenville County Council Chambers, 301 University Ridge #1200, Greenville) For these counties: Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenwood, Laurens, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg and Union
  • Tuesday, August 3rd, Florence (Florence-Darlington Technical College, SiMT, 1951 Pisgah Road) For these counties: Chesterfield, Clarendon, Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Lee, Marion, Marlboro, Sumter and Williamsburg
  • Wednesday, August 4th, Beaufort Auditorium in MacLean Hall at Technical College of the Lowcountry, 921 Ribaut Road) For these counties: Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton and Jasper
  • Monday, August 9th, Orangeburg (C-118 Auditorium at Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College, 3250 St. Matthews Road) For these counties: Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun and Orangeburg
  • Tuesday, August 10th, North Charleston College Center (Building 920 - Salon F&G) at Trident Technical College, 7000 Rivers Avenue) For these counties: Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Hampton, Jasper and Orangeburg
  • Wednesday, August 11th, Conway (Burroughs and Chapin Auditorium (Building 1100) at Horry-Georgetown Technical College, 2050 US-501) For these counties: Dillon, Georgetown, Horry, Marion, Marlboro and Williamsburg
  • Thursday, August 12th, Graniteville (Aiken Technical College, 2276 Jefferson Davis Highway) For these counties: Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Edgefield, Hampton, Lexington, McCormick, Orangeburg and Saluda

SCCMA, SBA to Sign Strategic Alliance Memorandum to Help Small and Minority Businesses in South Carolina

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs (SCCMA) and the United States Small Business Administration will announce a partnership to assist small, minority businesses in South Carolina on Thursday, July 29 at 10 a.m.

Through a Strategic Alliance Memorandum (SAM), both agencies will share information about programs and services that are designed to help individuals start, maintain and expand small, minority businesses in the state.

WHAT: SCCMA, SBA Strategic Alliance Memorandum Signing Ceremony

WHEN: Thursday, July 29, 2021 at 10 a.m.

WHO: Dr. Delores Dacosta, SCCMA Executive Director and Gregg White, District Director of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s South Carolina District Office

WHERE: Click the link to register for the event or join the event live via the SC Commission for Minority Affairs Facebook page.

For more information, contact Shireese M. Bell at 803-563-0283 or sbell@cma.sc.gov.

SC Commission for Minority Affairs Small and Minority Business Demographic Survey

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs' Small and Minority Business Division has released a survey to measure the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on small, minority-owned businesses in South Carolina. This survey will be used to inform future policy initiatives and current and future funding allocations from state and federal resources. Participation in this survey is vital in guiding our priorities and providing direction for upcoming events and activities. Submissions will remain anonymous. The survey is available in English and Spanish. Click to participate: English / Español

SC Commission for Minority Affairs’ Hispanic/Latino Affairs Division Launches CMA Sessions Video Series

The Hispanic/Latino Affairs Division of the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs launched its newest initiative called “CMA Sessions,” a series of educational conversations, webinars, and workshops designed to deliver information, resources and development opportunities to ethnic minorities across the state.

The series premiered on Thursday, July 15 on the agency’s Facebook page with the webinar “Latinx Going to College” with Arian Bonetto Fernandez, Assistant Director for Admissions at the College of Charleston. The Hispanic Latino Affairs Division’s program manager, Ivan Segura, and program assistant, Alex Tovar, will serve as the series’ hosts. CMA Sessions are presented in English and Spanish.

During this session, Fernandez discussed several important topics such as financial aid and scholarships, preparing for college, counseling services, stigmas and how students can succeed on their academic journey.

Presenters at the CMA Sessions include community activists, educators, social workers, and experts on different areas of interest for minority communities in South Carolina.  

CMA sessions will continue in the upcoming weeks with topics of interest to students and young professionals leading up to the agency’s inaugural SC Latinx Student Summit scheduled for Wednesday, October 27th at El Centro Latino at USC Upstate. 

Topics include workforce development, community service, how to honor your cultural background and foster a sense of belonging, leadership and civic engagement, and how to create your personal narrative.

To learn more about the SCCMA’s Hispanic/Latino Affairs Division, visit: https://cma.sc.gov/minority-population-divisions/hispaniclatino-affairs-division.

For more information, contact Ivan Segura at 803-995-8518 or isegura@cma.sc.gov.

SCCMA to Kick Off Grow with Google Small Business Series July 20

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs is partnering with Google to offer free training to help entrepreneurs expand their skills and grow their business. Through the Grow with Google initiative, the Commission for Minority Affairs will offer four webinars beginning Tuesday, July 20, 2021 on the following topics:

Launching Your Business with Customer-Focused Marketing / Tuesday, July 20 / VIEW WEBINAR

In this introductory course, learn how to launch their business with customer-focused marketing.

Reach Customers Online with Google / Tuesday, July 27 / VIEW WEBINAR

Learn how your business can be found online with Google. This workshop explains how Google Search works and how you can improve a website's visibility with Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The session also introduces products like Google My Business, Google Trends, Search Console, Google Analytics, Google Ads, and more. 

Use YouTube to Grow Your Business / Tuesday, August 3 at 10 a.m.

Learn best practices for creating a YouTube Channel and compelling video content that promotes your products and services and drives engagement with your brand in this introductory course. Participants will also learn how to reach more customers with YouTube Ads. REGISTER

Connect with Customers and Manage Your Business Remotely / Tuesday, August 10 at 10 a.m.

Discover Google tools that can help business owners work and manage their business during this time of uncertainty. Plus, get insights on more online and timely resources for small businesses. REGISTER

Grow with Google Digital Coach Shennice Cleckley will serve as the facilitator for each webinar. The goal of the webinars is to teach participants how to utilize Google’s resources to improve their online presence and reach new customers.

To register for the free sessions, visit www.cma.sc.gov/our-events. For more information, call the SC Commission for Minority Affairs at 803-333-9621 (Press 1 for English, Press 2 for Spanish).

Asian American and Pacific Islander Needs Assessment 

We're conducting a survey to address the needs of the Asian and Pacific Islander community in South Carolina. Participants will remain anonymous and data will be kept confidential. If you're AAPI, please take and share this survey. https://bit.ly/sccmasurveyaapi

SCCMA Launches Cultural Connections Quarterly Newsletter

Cultural Connections graphic

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs launched its inaugural quarterly newsletter, Cultural Connections, on Thursday, July 1, 2021. Be the first to hear about how the agency is bridging the gap between cultures and communities to create opportunities; upcoming events; cultural spotlights; community news and more. To view the inaugural issue, CLICK HERE. Stay connected with us by joining our electronic distribution list

Asian American and Pacific Islander Civic Engagement Youth Conference Held in May

In observance of Asian American and Pacific Islander Month, the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs held its inaugural Civic Engagement Conference for Asian American and Pacific Islander youth on Friday, May 21.  The virtual, free conference featured sessions on civic engagement, networking, and a panelist discussion on AA/PI culture and identity.  Panelists included Aditi Srivastav Bussells, PH.D., M.P.H., Director of Research at Children's Trust of South Carolina; Kenneth Sloane, Former President of Clemson University's Asian Student Association; and Ally Branzuela, Secretary of Wofford College's Asian and Pacific Islander Student Organization. Jimmy Chao, President and Chief Engineer with Chao and Associates, Inc., delivered the keynote address. To view the full video, visit SCCMA's YouTube channel.

Second Chance Reentry Resource Guide for the Formerly Incarcerated Now Available

In recognition of Second Chance Month, the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs released its initial Second Chance Reentry Resource Guide for formerly incarcerated individuals during a live event on Wednesday, April 21, 2021. The resource guide, which is comprised of local, state and national resources, is designed to assist the formerly incarcerated as they transition back to their communities.

The online event featured Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin; Lester Young, founder of Path2Redmption; Kimani Davis, owner of Mercy Contracting and founder of Ynotu2; Amy Hill, Federal Bonding Program Manager with the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce; and Tameka Crook, Director of Programming and Operations with Fresh Start Visions. Radio and television personality Brandy “Beasy Baybie” Henshaw served as the event moderator.

During the national Reentry Week, April 26-30, the Commission will share resources and highlight community programs on its Facebook page.

Click to view a copy of the Second Chance Reentry Resource Guide.

For more information, call the Commission for Minority Affairs at 803-333-9621. 

SC Commission for Minority Affairs’ Hispanic/Latino Affairs Division Launches COVID-19 Action Plan for Agricultural Workers and Latinos Living in Rural SC

The SC Commission for Minority Affairs’ Hispanic/Latino Affairs Division has launched the COVID-19 Action Plan for Agricultural Workers and Latinos Living in Rural SC. This action plan calls for collaborative efforts among state agencies, organizations, services providers, and community leaders/brokers to ensure COVID-19 information, materials, testing and vaccinations effectively reach this segment of the population. READ MORE. En español

South Carolinians Aged 16 and Older are Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccine

All South Carolinians aged 16 and older are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Currently, Pfizer is the only vaccine available to those aged 16-18. All three vaccines—Pfizer, Moderna and Janssen—are available to those aged 18 and older.   

Online appointments can be made by using scdhec.gov/vaxlocator or you can call DHEC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Information Line at 1-866-365-8110 for help. 

SCCMA Launches Latinx Career and Education Survey

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs Hispanic Latino Affairs Division has launched a Latinx Career and Education survey to help develop a network of educators, professionals, community organizations and students across the state. Through a new initiative called PLACE (Pathways for Latinxs to Advance Career and Education) Latinx students and young professionals will have the opportunity to learn about their shared experiences and available resources in their area. PLACE provides a platform where participants can network, interchange ideas, share resources as well as develop a sense of pride and belonging as a young Latinx in South Carolina. To complete a survey, CLICK HERE

Submit Your Information to be Included in the Small & Minority Business Directory

The S.C. Commission for Minority Affairs is developing a statewide Minority Business Directory to provide information to users who are interested in doing business with minority-owned businesses. To be included in the directory, complete the Minority Business Directory Questionnaire (English) | (Spanish).

SCCMA Community Civic Engagement Initiative

The South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs (“CMA”) is encouraging communities to become more civically engaged through a new Civic Engagement and Education Academy. The Commission for Minority Affairs will offer a virtual course on civic advocacy. Individuals, groups and organizations are encouraged to participate in the free program. READ MORE

COVID-19 Statewide Working Group for Latinx & Immigrant Communities

The SC Commission for Minority Affairs, SC Appleseed Legal Justice Center, PASOs and Hispanic Alliance formed a statewide working group of individuals, organizations and businesses serving the Latinx and immigrant communities in SC. The purpose of the work group is to coordinate and share information and resources available to families responding to the COVID-19 crisis. The group created a Directory of Service Providers to facilitate the process of finding resources, sharing information and promoting networking. If you, or your organization, are assisting the Latinx/immigrant community, or if you want to start helping, please complete the form! To ensure an accurate database, please complete all information. For more information, contact Ivan Segura at isegura@cma.sc.gov or Louise Popock at LPocock@scjustice.org.        

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