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December 1, 2015

5 Black-Owned Businesses Still Standing in Ferguson, Missouri -- One Year Later

Jerome and Cathy Jenkins, owners of Cathy's Kitchen in Ferguson, MO

It has been well over a year since the shooting of 18-year old African-American Michael Brown, the unarmed teen that was gunned down by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, a northern suburb of St. Louis. Many businesses, including those owned by blacks, were destroyed in ensuing riots. But many survived, including these 5 amazing black-owned businesses:

#1 - KZK Beauty Supply - was purchased by Mr. & Mrs. Gathungu in August 2014. They knew it was a critical time in Ferguson but counted on the community viewing them as a trusted source for beauty supplies. Fear did not hold back these amazing entrepreneurs from opening their business.

#2 - Fashions R Boutique - was burned to the ground, but was able to rebuild. The business is owned by Juanita Morris. Donations from GoFundMe, an online donation platform, and others who pitched in to help, enabled Morris to re-open her 30-year-old business.

#3 - Briant Mitchell's BKM Fitness Bootcamp - was vandalized twice, even though it is located near the Ferguson police department. With help from the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership and money from his own savings, owner Briant Mitchell keeps going and is determined to continue helping Ferguson residents live long and healthy lives.

#4 - Cathy's Kitchen - located in downtown Ferguson, is owned by husband/wife team Jerome and Cathy Jenkins. The diner remains open, serving breakfast and lunch, but getting the former dinner crowd has been a challenge.

#5 - Sam's Meat Market - was looted and vandalized three times, but they are open for business. It took the family-owned grocery store and meat market a year to rebuild but they celebrated with 600 pounds of barbecued ribs for their customers.

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