The COVID-19 virus has rapidly changed the way we live our daily lives. Businesses and nonprofits have been struggling with the economic impact and additional hardships brought about by the pandemic. There are a variety of relief funds available for businesses that need extra help during this unprecedented time. Recently passed legislation included $900 billion in aid to those affected and many foundations have set aside COVID-19 specific funding available to small businesses, nonprofits, and individuals.
CARES Act and Pandemic Relief Bill
The new stimulus package passed just before the holidays included relief and aid to individuals and businesses who were awaiting news of the next stimulus package. This relief bill contained renewals of a variety of funding offered through the first stimulus package and includes a variety of aid for specific populations and small businesses/nonprofit organizations also.
COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans
The CARES Act includes $20 billion for EIDL grants (economic injury disaster loan program). These grants are meant to provide economic relief for small businesses and nonprofit organizations that are experiencing a temporary loss of revenue and include aid for businesses in low-income communities. EIDL funds can be used to help cover normal operating expenses including health care benefits, rent, utilities, etc.
Entertainment and Theatre Venues
$15 billion of CARES Act funding has been set aside to help entertainment and theatre venues. This is known as the “Save Our Stages” Act and includes live venues, independent movie theatres, and cultural institutions. Organizations will need to have experienced a 25 percent revenue decline compared to same quarters from previous years. These allocations can include up to $10 million in aid for each organization. The Small Business Administration (SBA) is currently working on applications which will be posted on grants.gov and will host a pre-application informational webinar beforehand.
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP2)
An additional $285 billion in loans was approved under the Paycheck Protection Program. This funding is available to those with fewer than 300 employees that experienced at least a 25 percent decrease in revenue from quarters from previous years. $12 billion of this funding was specifically earmarked for minority-owned businesses, ensuring that many diverse and low-income communities will receive the aid they need to sustain their businesses.
Applications for Paycheck Protection
Program loans are currently being accepted by the Small Business Administration (SBA) from participating community financial institutions (CFIs) and lenders.
Click here for access to the full text of the bill.
Grant Funders and Foundations
For those looking for funding outside of federal opportunities, there are many grant funders and foundations who are providing aid to small businesses, nonprofits, and individuals.
Small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and individuals who are looking for a resource list of available grants and funding opportunities can utilize the following websites for their searches: