Citizens Offers Grants to Businesses with Positive Community Impact

Small businesses don’t just serve their customers; they can also be essential components of their communities. So grant programs often award funds to companies that have a positive community impact. Read about one such program from Citizens bank, along with several others, in the list below.

Citizens Small Business Community Champion Award

Citizens is currently running its annual Small Business Community Champion Award contest, which will award 30 grants of $10,000 to eligible companies. The contest is open to businesses across the 14 states where Citizens operates. Ten of the grants are reserved for women-owned businesses. Another ten will go to minority-owned companies. Five will go to veteran-owned companies. And the remaining five are open to all eligible businesses. Eligible businesses can apply online. The application includes questions about how businesses would use their award to strengthen both their business and their local community. Applications are available until February 1.

Buffalo Small Business Assistance Program

Buffalo, New York, is currently supporting small and minority-owned businesses through its Buffalo Small Business Assistance Program. The program is open to businesses with 50 or fewer full-time equivalent employees, offering both cash awards and technical assistance. Applicants whose 2021 or 2022 gross revenue was between $35,000-$150,000 can apply for grants of $7,500. Those with 2021 or 2022 gross revenue between $150,001 and $500,000 can apply for $12,500. Business applicants with a 2021 or 2022 gross revenue between $500,001 and $1,500,000 can apply for $25,000. Final funding amounts may vary based on need, project scope, COVID impact, and availability of funds. A total of $3,500,000 is available, which will be divided equally between the nine (9) Counsel districts.

Portland Microenterprise Grants

Portland, Maine, is still offering microenterprise grants to local businesses using the remainder of its federal COVID relief funds. The city originally allocated $400,000 to its latest round of microenterprise grants. And about $100,000 of that funding is still available. Eligible businesses and nonprofits can apply for reimbursement grants of $5,000 to cover various business expenses and professional services. To qualify, businesses must be located in Portland and have seven or fewer employees. Additionally, the owner’s household income must be within 80 percent of the local median income. Funding is being allocated on a first come, first served basis, but the city hopes to award all funds by the end of the year.

Indiana Technical Assistance Program

Small businesses across Indiana can apply for professional services grants of up to $15,000. The Indiana Small Business Development Center is currently accepting applications for its Indiana Technical Assistance Program. Eligible businesses across the state can apply for up to $15,000 to cover various growth and improvement projects. To qualify, applicants must have a physical presence in Indiana and be an Indiana SBDC client (or become one by March 1). Businesses must also have a project that they can complete by the end of the year, which should include a positive impact like job creation or new market expansion.

El Cajon Storefront Improvement Grants

El Cajon, California, recently approved a $500,000 grant program to help local businesses improve their storefronts. Eligible businesses can apply for grants of up to $20,000 to replace outdated or worn-down signage or grants of up to $15,000 to repaint their exterior using colors that the city’s graffiti abatement contractor can match. There will also be funding available for businesses to replace broken windows. Funding for the program comes from the city’s allocation of federal American Rescue Plan Act funds, all of which must be spent by then end of the fiscal year in September. The city expects to award about 30 grants through this program.

Denver Homeless Camp Grants

Denver is currently awarding grant funds to businesses that have been negatively impacted by homeless encampments throughout the city. Small businesses with encampments within two blocks of their property were eligible for grants of between $7,500 and $15,000. Businesses must also show evidence of slumping sales or safety issues. So far, the city has awarded grants to 69 affected businesses.

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This article, “Citizens Offers Grants to Businesses with Positive Community Impact” was first published on Small Business Trends