The Austin Woman staff show love for local businesses uplifting the community whether through advocacy, education or philanthropy.
Austin Bouldering Project is one of my favorite places to go in Austin. Yes, it’s a place to climb and workout, but they’ve also built an amazing community that has greatly contributed to my east Austin neighborhood. (And now they have a second Austin location on South Lamar.) A percentage of their membership revenue goes toward antiracism efforts, which includes providing neighboring community discounts, financial support for Black-led organizations involved with political action and support for voting campaigns aimed at removing barriers of voter suppression. The bouldering experience itself is more accessible than rock climbing because it doesn’t require any gear aside from climbing shoes (that you can rent) and welcomes all levels of experience. There are unlimited climbing options for beginners and pros alike. All are welcome.
I recently went to a small event put on by the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary here in Austin. They had food, drinks and a few adorable puppies up for adoption. The Best Friends Animal Sanctuary is striving to make every shelter a no-kill shelter nationwide by 2025. They also have foster programs available and plenty of volunteer opportunities. Go to bestfriends.org to learn more.
Community and Events Manager
Instacart was a necessity in every household when the pandemic hit, and now some of us couldn’t imagine going back into a grocery store to shop on our own. Instacart CEO Figji Simo is giving back to her community with a new women’s health startup, The Metrodora Institute. This clinic is made up of an array of world-class doctors including geneticists, immunologists, neuroscientists, chemists, physicists, machine-learning engineers and data scientists to bring a new outlook to women’s health.As women in a gender-biased medicinal society we are told “You’re just tired” or “This happens to all women,” and our health issues are brushed under the rug. The Metrodora Institute is here to dedicate its time to research and advocacy for women’s health. Its stated mission is to advance women’s health equity, with a focus on treating people with “complex neuroimmune disorders.”
I have been an avid reader since I was about 1 year old. As I’ve gotten older I’ve become so intentional about wanting to purchase books from Black-owned booksellers. There are quite a few, but not that many local to Austin. Then one year I stumbled across Black Pearl Books, a literal home business. The owner, Katrina Books, runs the store out of her house with her family, their garage acting as the storeroom. They’re not a traditional storefront by any stretch of the imagination. However, their store is very intentional and specific about the type of books they sell. These books are meant to help Black and Brown people see themselves in literature. You want to talk about diversity, equity and inclusion? Brooks lives and breathes this work. The Black Pearl Books selection is an education in and of itself. Truly one of my favorite businesses in Austin.
(By the way, the first book I purchased from them was Questlove’s latest, Music Is History.)