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These best friends created an app to help black women connect over brunch

Apparently we are in a ‘Friendscape’ crisis.

Recent research shows that Americans have fewer friends than in the past and are less likely to have a best friend because they never had one at all or lost the one they had due to changes in their life.

For best friends of 30, Melissa Mason and Lillian Jackson, they can attest to the growing pain of navigating friendships as adults. Besties since elementary school, it was a bit of a blow for both of them when Jackson moved across the country in 2014, something that had never happened in their more than two decades of friendship. .

“Growing up together in Richmond, Virginia, we were inseparable since elementary school,” Jackson said. “I had to move to Pennsylvania for a job promotion and immediately felt that loss of not having my best friend around.”

You might be thinking, why couldn’t she just build relationships in her new town? It is not so easy.

“When I moved out, we both quickly started to realize that we didn’t know how to make friends,” Jackson said, acknowledging that she had been part of a close friendship circle since school. primary. “Now that we are adults, we don’t understand how to go out and establish new relationships.”

Jackson said that once she had another job opportunity in Las Vegas, the idea of Brown skin brunch was born, an online platform and application dedicated to fostering true friendships for black women through something we all love: brunch.

“I actually started going to brunch by myself and Melissa asked me where all these friends were from because she was looking for the same thing,” Jackson explained. “We created a Meetup group in Richmond, Virginia and started posting.”

That’s when they realized it wasn’t a problem they alone were having. “A lot of adult women with no relationships, didn’t know how to make friends,” Mason said. “We weren’t interested in going to your typical networking event where you sit down with a name tag. We want to go out and hang out with like-minded women.

Since its inception in 2018, Jackson and Mason have crystallized their approach and created a membership model, which to date has over 19,000 members, hundreds of events and chapters in 43 cities.

Mason credits the brand’s rapid success to its authenticity.

“We understood what our members want – the opportunity to truly connect with people doing what we love, drinking mimosas and enjoying a great meal,” she shared. “It’s amazing what the power of friendship has built.”