Coffee County Black Business Support Fund
The Community Foundation of Coffee County and the Ash Foundation have created the Coffee County Black Business Support Fund to help alleviate the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on black businesses in Coffee County. The goal is to help encourage the rebuilding of diminished income as a result of COVID-19 in order to recover and sustain black businesses. It is designed to award grants to existing Black-owned, small businesses in Coffee County, Georgia. This assistance will add to working capital that can help further sustain their business operations while recovering from COVID-19 administrative and operational challenges. This includes, but are not limited to payroll, utilities, and other services and products that are needed to sustain their businesses.
In the spring of 2020, U.S. Congress approved over $660 billion in forgivable loans for small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. In large part, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and other Small Business Administration (SBA) relief efforts did not adequately extend relief to minority and especially black-owned businesses. This is however, not a new issue as black entrepreneurs are more than twice as likely to be denied a bank loan in comparison to whites. And when approved black entrepreneurs are less likely to receive favorable terms. Finally, the lack of community investment in Black neighborhoods also equates to less capital for business development and therefore less financial cushion to get through economic crises such as this. In essence, black businesses had a more difficult time accessing relief. Factors included,
- “Minority-owned businesses didn’t have relationships with lenders, banks, and credit unions approved to distribute PPP loans.
- Additionally, companies without payroll expenses were less likely to access relief funds.
- Out of the roughly 2.7 million black-owned businesses, only 120,000 have employees on payroll.
- About 40% of revenues generated by black-owned businesses are in sectors that were hardest hit, including leisure, hospitality, transportation, and retail.”
Black business survival rate during the 2008/9 crisis was 50% in comparison to 60% for white firms. And studies show that after this recent pandemic, 40% of black businesses have already closed for good. The purpose of the Coffee County Black Business Support Fund is to provide an additional layer of relief and support for black businesses and business owners in our area because of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Application Opens | Monday, September 21, 2020.
- Application Deadline | Friday, October 9, 2020 11:59pm
- Recipients Announced | October 16, 2020
Businesses must be black-owned.
Businesses must offer services and be physically located in Coffee County, GA.
Businesses must have been in business at least 6 months prior to March 1, 2020, according to their business license.
Businesses can be sole proprietors or have up to 50 employees.
The need for funding will be determined on access to federal funding and other emergency loan structures, if the business had to shut down or operate at a limited capacity due to a COVID-19 executive order and how the funds will be used.
Applications can be filled out and submitted on-line or postmarked by October 9th and mailed to:
Community Foundation of Coffee County
c/o Joan Zimmer
P.O. Box 279
Douglas, GA 31534-0279
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the size of the grant?
Coffee County BBSF has a total of $25,000 to grant which will be divided into grants of a minimum of $1,000.
Can I modify my application after it has been submitted?
No, all application submissions are final.
How will applicants be notified?
Grant applicants will be notified via email when their application is submitted. Once the review process is complete, business will be emailed or mailed on the final decision.
If my business has multiple owners, do we receive multiple grants?
If I have multiple businesses, can I receive multiple grants?
Does the grant have to be used for specific purposes, or just anything related to my business?
Business support grants should be used based on the goals outlined in the application.
How soon will I be notified that I am awarded or not awarded?
We will notify applicants of awards by October 16, 2020.
Do I have to pay back the money that I receive?
No. This is a grant opportunity funded by the Coffee County Black Business Support Fund.