There is money – up to $ 1,000 – available for minority and women-owned businesses – to be obtained with a simple application form.
The Diversified Small Business Emergency Relief Fund is provided by the National Institute Economic Development and published among the resources of the Craven Community College Small Business Center. It is open to small businesses throughout North Carolina.
Talina Massey of New Bern, owner of Business Savvy LLC, is interested in the grant and said there are likely hundreds of other minority and women-owned businesses in the area that may need help.
“Indeed, I would and I will certainly be interested in sharing this with our network,” she said.
Savvy provides consulting and marketing expertise for small businesses, with a network roster of 75 active companies.
The height of the COVID-19 shutdown has severely limited her in her face-to-face meetings with small business owners due to personal contact issues. Zoom has become one of the alternatives.
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“It had a big impact on my business because people like me to come, talk face to face, see my face, shake my hand,” she said. “It’s hard to get someone to trust you with their business on a zoom call or over the phone. It takes time.”
According to the New Bern Area Chamber of Commerce, there are a surprising number of small businesses statewide.
- One in four small businesses is about to close
- $ 100 spent with a local small business – $ 68 stays in the community
- 97.9% of businesses in North Carolina are small businesses
- 46% of North Carolinians work for small businesses
Money from the Emergency Relief Fund can be used to cover rent, utilities, or other operational expenses affected by a drop in business due to COVID-19.
You must apply using the online application.
Some of the qualifications include that the applicant was in business before February 2020; at least 51 per cent must be owned by a minority or by a woman; must be an active company as validated by the Secretary of State NC or any other verifiable document; and the applicant must demonstrate economic harm caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Charlie Hall can be reached at 252-635-5667 or 252-259-7585, or at email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook at Charlie Hall.