Stephens Southern Delights gets boost from Black businesses coalition

Bupe Mulenga has several food allergies so she knows how frustrating that can be if you want a sweet treat, but can’t find one with ingredients that work for you.

"We are a company focused on nutrition, especially for those who are ingredient sensitive, or food conscious customers," she said.

And from that idea, she fell into a new business at a strange time for all of us - in early 2020.

FOX 2: "When did you start your business?"

"At the best possible time - one month before COVID-19 kicked off," Mulenga quipped.

Since then, her ice cream brand: Stephen’s Southern Delights has been doing pop-ups getting her products out there - and that’s been great.

Right now she’s working to get her ice cream in big box stores, but in the meantime, an infusion of $25,000 from The Coalition to Back Black Businesses, helped propel her along.

"All praises to God that our business received it, and we're pushing forward," she said. "We're buying some commercial equipment for our business to expand,"

The coalition is a multi-year initiative established by American Express and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to support the long-term success and resilience of Black-owned small businesses.

"Get out of your head, make a plan - and go after your dreams - that’s it," said Mulenga.

And soon her ice cream could be "rolling" up near you.

"We’re actually going to do a food truck where we're going to do sundaes and things like that, around the Detroit Metropolitan Area," she said.