On April 11, 2021, the Southern Africa Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated was chartered by 18 dynamic, global visionaries becoming the first alumnae chapter of DST to be chartered in the southern region on the continent of Africa!
Since that time, the chapter has been spearheading many initiatives that not only further the ideals and five thrusts of our organization but also further positively impact the 22 countries in Southern Africa that we serve.
Under the leadership of our chapter president, Soror Sherida Stevens, SAAC services 17 countries including South Africa, Kenya, Angola, Lesotho, Eswatini, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Tanzania, Botswana, Comoros, Mozambique, Malawi, Seychelles, Democratic Republic of Congo, Namibia, Mauritius, and Madagascar.
BTW, shout out to the West Africa Alumnae Chapter who chartered less than a week after SAAC!
Given SHOPPE BLACK’s commitment to supporting Black entrepreneurship globally, it was a no-brainer when our chapter’s 1st VP, Soror La Chenna Cromer reached out about a potential collab with Southern Africa Alumnae. Of course, we said YES!
While we received hundreds of responses to our call to action, we’ve narrowed this list down to a handful of soror-owned businesses in the Eastern Region. No worries if you didn’t make the cut, many more of these profiles, features, and initiatives are to come, not only for our sorors who own businesses but also for entrepreneurs representing other members of the Divine 9, globally.
Want to learn more about the amazing work that the Southern Africa Alumnae chapter of DST is doing on the African continent? Follow us on IG: @dstsouthernafrica.
Let the dollar circulate, especially if it’s giving crimson and cream. Oo-Ooopppppp!
Shantrelle, Co-Founder, SHOPPE BLACK
And proud member of SAAC, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated
Founded by Soror Felicia Stokes, Luxurious Wellniss is a mission-driven wellness company that serves women and men of color whose needs have not been prioritized in the wellness sector. They promote and sell beauty and wellness brands primarily created for and by women and people of color. In addition to buying their products online, you can book a facial at their brick-and-mortar Skin Lab located in Orange, New Jersey.
FOOD + BEVERAGES
Busy & Baked
Soror Kassandra Scales, baking is a love language. However, like many of us with a million and one responsibilities, time is a luxury that she prefers to spend doing things that she loves. That’s why she founded BUSY & BAKED, a virtual culinary class that teaches you the art of baking. One of the best aspects of her yummy company is that you can sign up for a class with family, sorors, or friends!
The first of its kind in Ghana, Crescendo Foods is a shared food-focused coworking space. We provide valuable mentorship to food businesses, flexible access to a commercial kitchen and event space celebrating food culture.
Offering high quality equipment in a commercial kitchen space, technical assistance, co-working space, and community under one roof. Founded by Soror/Dr. Wanida Lewis, an ex-pat who is now based in Accra, Ghana.
Global Glam Kapemono
Soror Kerry Scott is the originator behind Global Glam’s signature Kapemono – the combination of vibrant African-printed cape and kimono garments. The reversible kapemonos can be worn for a variety of occasions, adding a bit of culture and pizzazz to any wardrobe.
It’s no secret that the clothing industry has notoriously not been colorblind when it comes to nude apparel. This is especially disappointing for moms with daughters in dance school. Inspired by the Aurora Lights, that’s why Soror Imani Rickerby and her co-founders, Jasmine Snead and Sydney Parker founded Aurora Tights to meet the needs of melanated athletes and dancers. Each with their own story to tell, moms and kids don’t have to search anymore for apparel that makes them feel SEEN.
The Sitota Collection
Brooklyn-born, South Africa-based Soror Yvette D. Gayle wears many hats. In addition to her recognition as a global media maven, and co-owning one of the largest creative agencies in Africa that she founded with her husband, in addition to serving as one of SAAC’s 19 charter members, she still finds time to make small batch, hand made luxury soaps and candles.
Frères Branchiaux Candle Co.
Soror and Mamapreneur Celena Gill taught her three sons valuable and lucrative skills to earn extra money for toys and video games. Their allowance turned salaries led to the founding of Freres Branchiaux Candle Co. Her sons Collin, Ryan, and Austin have been providing aromatherapy in interior spaces everywhere. You can shop by fragrance or mood!
Grayspace Interiors is an award-winning residential and commercial interior design firm based in Philadelphia, PA. Founded by Soror Rasheeda Gray, Grayspace has completed over 100+ residential and commercial interior design projects. While Grayspace is East Coast based, they offer virtual design services for clients in other regions as well.
RECREATION + OUTDOORS
Scuba Center & Outdoor Rec
Soror Beverly Lyles (hey prophyte…Alpha Chapter SP 1977) founded Scuba Center & Outdoor Rec center with her husband Fred Lyles, Sr. Fueled by his passion for diving, and with over 50+ years of scuba experience, their business does more than provide training and certifications in diving, you can also join them for one of many international diving excursions and buy their wet suit apparel and equipment.
Like many of us, I’ve increasingly understood the importance of self-care as an act of resistance and the importance of healing not only for ourselves but within our families and bloodlines. After directing and producing IN OUR MOTHERS’ GARDENS (you can watch it on Netflix thanks to Ava DuVernay and ARRAY), I further understood the importance of helping our community to heal generational wounds by deeply connecting with our ancestors and sacred cultural heritage.
To that end, I founded the ATRS BOOK CLUB and will be opening BEAUCOUP HOODOO bookstore and botanica this Summer! For the past few years, BEAUCOUP HOODOO has served as a safe, multi-generational community where Black folks can learn more about African sacred traditions.
Our work has been committed to demystifying African spirituality and celebrating the cosmology, history and aesthetics of African Traditional Religions across the Diaspora. Sign up for one of our ATRS 101 courses today!