The Small Business Administration (SBA) has issued 14 grants to organizations across the United States in an effort to improve delivery, training, and support for women-owned businesses affected by Covid-19.
Each scholarship awarded is equivalent to up to $200,000. They are part of the Demonstrating Resilience and Recovery from Women’s Business Centers (WBC) scholarship under the SBA’s Women’s Business Ownership Office (OWBO).
SBA awards $2.7 million in grants to women’s business centers
From gender stereotypes to lack of access to finance, women entrepreneurs face complex challenges when starting, growing, and sustaining a business. The challenges that emerged from the Covid-19 pandemic have put additional pressure on women-led businesses.
Research indicates that about 83% of women entrepreneurs report that the pandemic has had a negative impact on their business, while nearly four in ten said their business will or may have to close as a result.
The grant program is designed to meet the needs and needs of women business owners who have been affected by the pandemic. Through training and support, Project Awards will help women entrepreneurs overcome barriers and be in a better position to maintain business success.
Female Entrepreneurs Vital to Reviving the Nation
Natalie Madera Caufield, Assistant Director of the SBA Office of Women’s Business Ownership, commented on the importance of sustaining women-led businesses to helping the nation recover:
“The growth and recovery of small women-owned businesses is essential to our nation’s recovery. During the pandemic, our women’s business hubs have played an instrumental role in meeting the needs of female entrepreneurs during particularly difficult times. As resource providers, they have also been impacted by the changing business landscape and have had to pivot to meet the needs of society. .
“With this funding, we will support WBCs that have created innovative programs to increase access to aspiring women entrepreneurs and events nationwide. We are proud to support organizations that have deep connections to small, diverse, rural communities across the country and who understand their unique needs,” continued Natalie Madera Caufield.
White blood cell support
The scholarships were open to existing SBA-funded WBCs. It was about $2.7 million in available funding. Respondents who were successfully awarded grants demonstrated an innovative approach to service delivery. The proposals included detailed plans for projects to improve service delivery, training, and support for women-owned businesses affected by the pandemic.
Organizations that were awarded Demonstration Grants for WBS Resilience and Recovery included:
- CWE Eastern Massachusetts Women’s Business Center in Boston, Massachusetts
- The Women’s Center for Entrepreneurship The Women’s Entrepreneur Center in Chatham, New York
- WISE Women’s Business Center in Syracuse, New York
- The Women in Entrepreneurship Center of Chatham University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- WeVENTURE Women’s Business Center at Florida Tech Basic College of Business in Melbourne, Florida
- Benedict College Women’s Business Center in Columbia, South Carolina
- WEOC Women’s Business Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana
- WomenVenture WBC in Minneapolis, MN
- Albuquerque Women’s Business Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico
- Arkansas Women’s Business Center in Little Rock, Arkansas
- Mi Casa Women’s Business Center in Denver, Colorado
- California Capital Women’s Business Center in Sacramento, California
- Women’s Business Center for Women’s Economic Enterprise in Santa Barbara, California
- Idaho Women’s Business Center – Twin Falls in Twin Falls, ID
Since its opening in 1979, the Women’s Business Ownership Office has been dedicated to empowering women entrepreneurs through advocacy, awareness raising, education and support.
More information about SBA programs and services for women entrepreneurs can be found here.