A MUM has successfully raised more than £10,000 to open the first black-owned bookshop in the city.

Carolynn Bain will open Afrori Books on Tuesday, October 26 in Kensington Street, Brighton after receiving £12,460 in donations.

The bookshop aims to be a community space, drawing in authors and young creatives from all over Sussex as well providing training to help teachers integrate diverse books into the classroom.

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Founder Carolynn, who lives in Bevendean, said she hopes her shop will pave the way for other black businesses in the city.

She said: “I am completely blown away by the love the public has shown to our dream of making Brighton an anti-racist city.

“The night we hit the target I sobbed; I was so overwhelmed”

Carolynn set up Afrori Books last year after the death of George Floyd – an African American man who was murdered by police in Minneapolis.

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His death sparked protests across the world, including several marches that took place Brighton and Hove.

Soon after the launch, Carolynn said she was hit with a “flurry of racial abuse” and comments from people who believe it is “not necessary” to have a bookshop favouring black authors.

She said: Yes, there were a lot of people that think we are wrong. But we believe in the work we do, it is making a difference.

“Changing the way people read is fundamental to affecting their outlook and reading habits for life, and it is through reading that we can have the greatest impact on attitudes to racism in the future. Afrori Books is changing the world, one book at a time.”

Afrori Books is committed to fair wages, and Carolynn is seeking staff from marginalised groups who have found it difficult to find employment.

The launch will be celebrated with a party at the store in the North Laine on October 23, at 7.30pm.

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