The Power of Community: Bridging the Gap for Canadian Black Podcasters

Jan 31, 2024

Bridging the Gap for Canadian Black Podcasters

There is strength in unity – and podcasting is a fantastic avenue for creating a community. I met Sherley Joseph at a Podfest event and was so impressed with her story of starting a podcast, sharing her voice, turning it into a community and grown it into the Black Canadian Creators podcast, community and directory becoming a leader in the space and helping black Canadian creators share their voice.

  • How the Black Canadian Creators community has grown and transformed, offering lessons on community building and engagement.
  • Lessons on how to foster a community from the ground up, as exemplified by the creation of the Black Canadian Creators community and Facebook group.
  • Inspiration from the community’s progression into a supportive network, highlighting the benefits of being part of a like-minded group of content creators.
  • Ideas on how to cultivate a collaborative environment for sharing resources and support, as demonstrated by the community’s evolution.
  • Information on a valuable directory for content creators, which could serve as a platform to showcase your work or discover others’.


([00:11:32]) The challenges in creating a community and finding Canadian creators and podcasters 

([00:13:15]) The inception of the Black Canadian Creators Facebook group and the growth of the community.

([00:18:40]) The positive feedback and impact of the Black Canadian Creators community on content creators.

([00:20:17]) The creation of the Black Canadian Creators directory to help content creators be seen and heard.

([00:22:39]) The role of community in empowering content creators, fostering support, and providing resources.

([00:26:16]) Exploring the impact of sharing authentic stories and creating a community for diverse voices.

([00:29:00]) The importance of being authentic and clear in conveying messages to attract and connect with the audience.

([00:30:53]) The impact of genuine storytelling and the potential for unexpected opportunities.

([00:35:13]) Advice for those wanting to start a podcast or create a community, including self-reflection and understanding the audience.


The Spark That Ignited a Movement

I remember the first time I met Sherley. It was at a PodFest tour last month, and she was on stage, radiating great energy and delivering a powerful message. I knew right then that I had to have her on my show. When she finally sat down with me, I was eager to dive into her story.

Sherley journey began in 2010, but the seeds were planted much earlier. Winning an iPod Nano in 2008 was a pivotal moment for her, sparking a love for broadcasting that dated back to childhood games of playing radio with her reluctant brother. This passion led her and her husband to start the Chonilla podcast, a show that delved into their lives as an interracial couple, inspired by their favorite podcast, Keith and the Girl.


Building a Community from the Ground Up

Sherley transition from podcasting to creating the Black Canadian Creators community was driven by a noticeable gap in representation. In the early days of Chonilla, black creators, particularly in Canada, were few and far between. Sherley saw the need for a space where black Canadian creators could connect and support each other, leading to the formation of a Facebook group that quickly grew into something much more.


A Supportive Network for Underrepresented Voices

The Black Canadian Creators community has evolved into a hub for collaboration, support, and resource-sharing. It’s a testament to the power of community, providing a space where content creators can find camaraderie, advice, and encouragement. This evolution has been incredible to witness, and it’s clear that Sherley efforts have made a significant impact.

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Amplifying Voices Through a Directory

One of Sherley’s most notable contributions is the creation of a directory to help content creators gain visibility. This free platform allows creators to showcase their work and connect with potential collaborators and brands, making underrepresented voices more visible and creating opportunities for growth.


Authenticity Over Numbers

During our conversation, Sherley emphasized the importance of authenticity and community building over mere follower counts. She shared her vision for the future, including plans to expand her community and create a bridge between black American and Canadian podcasters. Her dedication to supporting content creators and her passion for creating a space for diverse voices were palpable throughout our discussion.


A Vision for the Future

As we wrapped up our conversation, Sherley shared her contact information and invited listeners to join the Black Canadian Creators community. Her story is a powerful reminder of the impact one person can have on an industry and the importance of fostering a supportive network for content creators.

I’m incredibly grateful to Sherley for sharing her journey and insights with us. Her dedication to authenticity, community building, and amplifying underrepresented voices is truly inspiring. As we look to the future of podcasting and content creation, it’s clear that the values Sherley embodies will continue to shape the landscape for the better.

If you’re a content creator looking for support, inspiration, or just a sense of community, I encourage you to connect with Sherley and the Black Canadian Creators community. Together, we can continue to build a more inclusive and supportive industry for all voices.


About Sherley

Sherley Joseph, is born in Montreal but creates in Toronto. Sherley is an accomplished podcaster, radio host, producer, digital media strategist and entrepreneur. She’s the Co-founder of The Chonilla Network a podcast collective and new media production company and Community Founder / Host for Black Canadian Creators. An Instagram theme page 4000+ creatives and Facebook Group of 400+ vetted creators.



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