Grants Available for Minority-Owned Businesses and Companies Offering Paid Sick Leave

grants available for minority-owned businesses

Many businesses are still feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Those that have made it to this point are often seen as big parts of their communities. So some local governments and organizations are trying to reward these companies through small business grant programs. Read on for more on the latest small business grants.

California Small Business & Nonprofit COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Relief Grant Program

Small business lender Lendistry is partnering with the state of California to facilitate the latest round of the California Small Business & Nonprofit COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Relief Grant Program. The program offers reimbursement grants to small businesses that provided COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022. Eligible businesses can apply for grants between $5,000 and $50,000, with the amount based on the amount of paid sick leave provided. The latest funding round launches on June 1.

SoGal Black Founder Startup Grant

SoGal Foundation is offering $10,000 and $5,000 grants to Black women and nonbinary entrepreneurs. The organization is partnering with Winky Lux, bluemercury, twelveNYC, Twilio,’s Center for Racial Equity to fund the program. Participants will also gain insights and assistance from the SoGal Foundation and SoGal Ventures teams. In addition to being a woman or nonbinary entrepreneur, applicants must also have a legally registered business and plan to seek investor financing in order to qualify. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis.

Phoenix Suns and FirstBank Empowerment Awards

The Phoenix Suns and FirstBank partnered to offer six grants to minority-owned small businesses during this NBA season. This was the first year for the FirstBank Empowerment Awards, which was an expansion of the Los Suns Small Business MVP Award originally launched in 2018. This year’s recipients got a $5,000 grant and marketing support. Though this year’s application period has closed, the organizations plan to offer more awards during the next NBA season. You can sign up to get a notification when the application period launches.

Geneva Community Development Block Microenterprise Assistance Program

Geneva, New York is providing grants between $5,000 and $30,000 to small businesses through its Community Development Block Microenterprise Assistance Program. The program is funded using $180,000 from the New York State Office of Community Renewal. The city is hosting three informational sessions for interested businesses on June 12. Two will be held in person and the third is a virtual option. There is an online registration form available on the city’s website for those interested in attending the informational sessions.

Downtown Ithaca Alliance Grants

Ithaca, New York is trying to help its downtown businesses that are still struggling with effects of the pandemic. The Downtown Ithaca COVID Recovery Small Business Grant Program offers 10 grants of up to $8,000 to eligible downtown businesses. Recipients can use funds for capital improvements or marketing costs. Businesses must be able to demonstrate how they were impacted during the pandemic and their plans for recovery in order to qualify for funding. The program is open to all businesses that meet requirements for ARPA funds, but women and minority-owned businesses will receive priority. The application deadline is June 15.

Reading ARPA Grants

Reading, Pennsylvania is planning to allocate $2 million of its American Rescue Plan Act funds to a small business grant program. City Council and the Mayor are still working out the details. However, the latest proposal involves allocating $1 million for businesses on Penn Street and $1 million for businesses throughout the rest of the city. This plan would also allow Penn Street businesses to apply for up to $50,000, with other businesses eligible for up to $25,000. The goal ultimately would be to provide extra support to the city’s downtown area. Other proposed qualifications include being in business prior to March 3, 2020, being able to prove revenue loss related to the COVID-19 pandemic, having 25 or fewer employees, and being a licensed business in Reading. The details are not final, but local businesses may receive updates shortly.

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Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 12 years. Annie covers feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. She has a bachelor’s degree from Columbia College Chicago in Journalism and Marketing Communications.