Maryland’s First Cannabis Delivery App, Upling, Wins Award at DC Startup Week Competition

Colin Fraser, a pioneering cannabis entrepreneur from Silver Spring, has created the first cannabis delivery app in Maryland and the first Black-owned cannabis delivery app in the United States and Jamaica. Fraser, the founder of Upling, was declared the winner of the growth-stage round at DC Startup Week. The startup wants to make medical cannabis more accessible, especially for folks who have a hard time making it to a dispensary because of health issues. “We saw that it’s hard for those who are older or vets to get their medication,” Fraser said in a recent interview. “So when you talk about medical cannabis, it’s hard for them to go into the lines, stand up and get cannabis.” Funding amounts for both winners are typically announced immediately following the event, but the announcement for the growth stage was delayed due to a founder being unable to present during the main pitch event.

More on Colin Fraser and Upling: “With a passion for cannabis advocacy and a deep understanding of the plant’s medicinal properties, Fraser has played a vital role in shaping the legal cannabis landscape by testifying in Maryland for black and brown cannabis entrepreneurs to have equality in the legacy market, and holding the first cannabis round table with now governor Wes Moore. Recognizing the importance of giving back, Fraser actively supports initiatives aimed at social equity within the cannabis space. A cannabis entrepreneur who has overcome significant challenges as a returning citizen to make a lasting impact in the industry. With a steadfast determination and a passion for social justice.

Colin dedicated himself to personal and spiritual growth, and acquiring knowledge about the cannabis plant. He saw the potential of cannabis as a means to uplift communities and create economic opportunities for individuals like himself who had been affected by harsh drug policies. In 2021, at the height of the pandemic, Colin founded Upling LLC, The first Black-Owned MBE cannabis delivery App in the US and Jamaica. While going on to speak at Canex Jamaica, black cannabis week in Philly and the National cannabis festival Colin has always stayed committed to social equity and providing second chances to individuals impacted by the criminal justice system. Through his business, he aimed to create jobs, offer training programs, and support reentry services for those seeking a fresh start in the cannabis industry.

Recognizing the power of collaboration, Colin formed partnerships with organizations that shared his vision. He worked closely with nonprofits focused on reentry programs, helping individuals with criminal records gain the necessary skills and support to thrive in the cannabis industry. His efforts earned him respect and admiration from both the cannabis community and criminal justice reform advocates. In addition to his entrepreneurial pursuits, Colin remains committed to pushing for systemic change. He actively engages in policy discussions, striving to dismantle the barriers that hinder individuals with criminal records from fully participating in the legal cannabis market.

In his journey as a returning citizen cannabis entrepreneur, Colin has become an inspiration to many, proving that personal setbacks can be transformed into opportunities for growth and meaningful impact. His dedication to social justice, advocacy, and empowering others serves as a testament to the transformative power of the cannabis industry and the potential it holds for creating a more equitable society.”

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Karen joined the Well-Paid Maids team as a cleaner in January 2021, and she was recently promoted to an operations manager! This well-deserved promotion is part of Well-Paid Maids' effort to deliver better customer service with responses to phone calls and emails seven days a week. To celebrate Karen's promotion, we caught up with her to learn more about her time at Well-Paid Maids, the area's only certified living-wage cleaning company.

 1. Why Well-Paid Maids?

Karen: I saw the company was paying a living wage and had great benefits. Also, they were very flexible with my schedule, especially since I have kids.

 2. How has it been working at Well-Paid Maids?

Karen: I feel very appreciated at the company. This is the first job where I feel I'm able to speak about any issue and that management will support me.

 3. How has working at Well-Paid Maids benefitted you?

Karen: Because Well-Paid Maids pays a living wage, I can now spend more time with my kids and not work double shifts like I did at my old job.

 4. How do you plan to spend your PTO this year?

Karen: I look forward to traveling to El Salvador to visit my family there.

 5. How would you describe Well-Paid Maids as an employer in three words?

Appreciated, valued and opportunity

Submit your own Announcement here.

Washington City Paper is hosting its annual Best of D.C. contest -- and Well-Paid Maids is eyeing the Best Maid Service category. If you missed it: Well-Paid Maids has secured first place for the past three years. Can you help us snag gold again? Simply go to the ballot and write in your vote for the best maid service. In case you need a refresher before you vote, Well-Paid Maids is the only certified living-wage cleaning company in the D.C. area. We pay our cleaners, who are W-2 employees, at least $24 an hour and offer benefits like insurance, 24 paid days off per year and more. Voting is open until June 10 at 5 p.m., and the winner will be announced July 18. (We'll keep you posted!) Thank you for your support -- and if you still haven't booked a spring cleaning yet, now is the time!

Submit your own Announcement here.

Movie being filmed in McLean, VA, needs your support

A local community movie is filming in our area in June and needs contributions!

Local actors, teens, teachers, housewives, and retired residences are trying to make this film happen but we need your help.

This is an educational short story about teens learning how to navigate when they don't feel accepted by their friends and what to do to find acceptance. Yet this film isn't just for teens. In your life have you ever felt like you weren't accepted??

Come be a part of the audience for this film! Invite your friends. Be a part of this film being produced right here in our area.

This is a social impact film that will show locally and internationally at film festivals in 2025 and also at colleges.

More information can be found here. DONATE TODAY:

This is a not-for-profit film and donations are tax-deductible.

Free Community Father-Daughter Dance

Fathers and father figures, create unforgettable memories with your daughter at our free community father-daughter dance on June 1st, from 6-8 pm. Hosted outdoors at Olney Baptist Church. This event offers a delightful outdoor experience complete with a DJ spinning tunes, interactive games, a charming photo booth, delicious treats, and exciting raffle prizes. Fathers/father figures and daughters of all ages are warmly welcomed to share in this special evening together. Join us for an evening of joy, laughter, and cherished moments!

In the spirit of giving back to our community, we are partnering with Quest to Feed Montgomery to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need. We kindly ask each attendee to bring along a non-perishable food item to donate during the event. Every contribution, no matter how small, will go a long way in supporting families facing food insecurity in our area.


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