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Business Grants for Minority Women

Published By Janet Gershen-Siegel at March 26th, 2021

Business Grants for Minority Women

Business Grants for Minority Women and So Much More

Are you a minority woman in business? Or are you starting a business? Money is always going to be an issue. What if you could get what is essentially free money? That’s what grants are – for the most part. So it would behoove you to look into business grants for minority women.

Business Grants for Minority Women and More Funding for Minority Businesswomenbusiness grants for minority women Credit Suite2 - Business Grants for Minority Women

How do you find the best options for you? How do you know if you need to be looking for grants or business loans for minority women? We recommend that you explore every option. This is because it will probably take a combination of funding options to fully fund your business.

There are business loans for minority women. But they’re often not for them exclusively. But there are other funding choices out there. Loans, crowdfunding, and even angel investors are all viable options. More on those later.

Business Grants for Minority Women

The government and private organizations want to GIVE you money! They’re highly competitive and rarely enough to fund a business on their own. Still, grants are a great way to supplement other business funding. And they are still worth the effort to apply. There really isn’t anything to lose except time – it’s free money. Here are a few you can start with.

Amber Grant

The Amber Grant awards one prize of $10,000 per month to a woman-owned business. One of the recipients also receives an additional $25,000 grant at the end of the year. Applicants only need to tell their story and turn it in with a $15 application fee. See ambergrantsforwomen.com/get-an-amber-grant/apply-now.

Cartier Women’s Initiative Award

This award is for women but there’s no specification that a woman be a member of a minority group. The Cartier Women’s Initiative Award has a regional category award and a science and technology award. The regional award is $100,000 for first place, and $30,000 for second and third place.

The award goes to three women from each of seven international regions. This award is a grant to 21 female business owners from around the world each year. Women business owners who are just getting started may qualify. Look over the complete application for more information. See cartierwomensinitiative.com/about-us.

The Cartier Science and Technology Pioneer Award

The Cartier Science and Technology Pioneer award is new as of 2021. With this award, three more women impact entrepreneurs at the forefront of scientific and technological innovation will get recognition. Open to women entrepreneurs from any country and sector. This award will highlight disruptive solutions built around unique, protected, or hard-to-reproduce technological or scientific advances. The laureate will get a $100,000 grant. Each of the two remaining finalists will get a $30,000 grant.

Cartier Fellowships

Cartier also offers a fellowship program. The fellowship is an educational program geared towards the 24 fellows selected each year. The fellowship program aims to equip the fellows with necessary skills to grow their business. And it helps them to build their leadership capacity. It does so by drawing upon the experience and expertise of many academics, practitioners, industry experts, and entrepreneurs.

The fellowship isn’t exactly a grant. But while it’s not a monetary award, the mentoring and networking opportunities could be worthwhile to apply for. See cartierwomensinitiative.com/fellowship-programme.

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Demolish your funding problems with 27 killer ways to get cash for your business.

Business Grants for Minority Women – Black Women

National Black MBA Association Scale-Up Pitch Challenge

Also known as NBMBAA, the Scale-Up Pitch Challenge has cash prizes from $1,000 to $50,000. The association’s purpose is to help newer businesses with African American ownership. This is a pitch competition for startup businesses. See nbmbaa.org/scale-up-pitch-challenge.

The Minority Business Development Agency

The US Department of Commerce runs the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA). It works to help minority-owned businesses get the resources they need to grow and succeed. The MBDA is not just for women. Grant competitions are regularly changing.

Visit the MBDA’s website for info on all current opportunities. Currently, the MBDA helps its members apply for grants via Grants.gov. This involves help with how to apply for government grants. See mbda.gov/grants.

The MBDA oversees the Enterprising Women of Color (EWOC) Initiative. The initiative focuses on the fast-expanding minority women entrepreneur population as a revenue generators for families, communities, and the nation. Minority women are the fastest growing population of entrepreneurs. While many women are making tremendous strides in the business world, they still face obstacles as entrepreneurs

MBDA is an advocate for women’s economic empowerment. They support efforts to advance women’s equality and promote women economic advancement programming. The vision of EWOC is to ensure women worldwide reach their economic potential. See mbda.gov.

The Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund

The Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund is new. It is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fund offers $10,000 to successful applicants. The fund specifically focuses on providing grants to business owners of color, women-owned businesses, and other underrepresented entrepreneurs. See lisc.org/covid-19/small-business-assistance/small-business-relief-grants/verizon-small-business-recovery-fund.

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Business Grants for Minority Women – Native Americans

First Nations Development Institute Grants

The mission of this group is to offer grants that help Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, and Native Americans. These grants are for any gender. So you would be competing against Native Hawaiian, Alaskan, and Native American men. They help in the application process in addition to funds.

First Nations also helps point individuals to appropriate grants offered by other organizations, including the US government. This includes help with writing grant proposals. See firstnations.org/grantmaking.

The Native American Business Development Institute (NABDI) Grant

The NABDI Grant is funded by the US Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs. It is not just for women. It provides funding to business owners of Native American or Alaskan Native descent. In 2019, the program provided more than $727,000 to 21 indigenous tribes. So this was to support economic feasibility studies for specific economic development projects or business startups.

For 2020, NABDI planned to award 20-25 grants. There is no minimum or maximum amount of funding you can request. But most awards range $25,000 to $75,000. They only fund projects for one year at a time, which is when they expect projects to be completed. To apply for a NABDI grant for your proposed economic development feasibility study, go to bia.gov/service/grants/tedc/apply-nabdi-grant.

Indian Affairs

There is more available via the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Businesses owned by Native Americans can get financing from the federal government through the Indian Affairs branch. These are not just for women. An individual can fill out an application for up to $500,000. But business entities and tribal enterprises may apply for more.

Potential borrowers can apply with any lending institution, they just have to use the application for Indian Affairs. Additional requirements are in place if the funds are used for construction, renovation, or refinancing. In general, you must supply a list of collateral, a credit report, and an analysis of business operations. See bia.gov/as-ia/ieed/loan-guaranty-insurance-and-interest-subsidy-program

Business Grants for Minority Women – Asian Woman

The South Asian Arts Resiliency Fund

If your business is in the arts, and you’re of South Asian descent, then check out this fund. The fund is operated by the India Center Foundation. It is designed to support US-based South Asian arts workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic

The fund will disburse grants up to $2,000, depending on financial need to US-based arts workers of South Asian descent. This includes those in the performing arts, film, visual arts, and literature. It’s for people with heritage from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Initial funding for the program is $20,000. But the India Center Foundation is soliciting donations to expand the grant program.

Applicants must be of South Asian descent, work in the arts and demonstrate loss of income due to COVID-19. Additionally, applicants must be at least 21 years old. You can’t be enrolled in a degree program. Plus they must be able to receive taxable income in the US. Grant funding can go toward any artistic project you can develop, create, and present within 4-6 weeks of getting funding. See theindiacenter.us/artsfund.

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Demolish your funding problems with 27 killer ways to get cash for your business.

Business Grants for Minority Women – Grants for All

Grants.gov

The federal government gives out grants to all genders and all races. Grants.gov is a running list of over 1,000 available government grants. So this includes minority business grants. The website compiles grants from more than two dozen government agencies. These are agencies like the SBA, USDA, and the US Department of Commerce. To find grants right for your business, use the Search Grants tool on the site. Sort the list of grants by keyword or opportunity number.

Once you have located the grant you wish to apply for, click the hyperlinked opportunity number for more detail. There, you will find more information about the specific grant as well as any associated documentation you might need. To apply for a grant through Grants.gov, you must first register. Then, you will be able to download an application package for the grant you want. Be ready for a lengthy process. See grants.gov.

More Types of Funding

Crowdfunding

If you’d rather not rely on grants so much to start and run your business, crowdfunding is a viable option. Still, not everyone with a campaign on a crowdfunding site is successful. This is because more unique products and services tend to do better. Kickstarter and Indiegogo are two of the most popular crowdfunding platforms to use. Some platforms may have higher success rates for women than others.

Angel Investors

Angel investors are informal investors. So essentially, you are selling a part of your business to them.  They tend to not want a huge percentage of your business. And they won’t pass by more conventional businesses, like with crowdfunding and venture capital. Hence they can be another supplement or replacement for grants.

Business Center for New Americans

If grants aren’t an option, loans might work. So if you’re an immigrant, try the Business Center for New Americans. They offer a pilot program for microloans up to $75,000. They work with immigrants, refugees, women, and other minority entrepreneurs. The goal is to help minority business owners who have not been able to get traditional financing. Terms are 3% interest. Loan repayment term goes up to a year. See accompanycapital.org.

Business Grants for Minority Women: Takeaways

So there are several options for grants for minorities and for women. Minority women should apply for grants they feel they are most likely to get. Other options for funding include crowdfunding, angel investors, and loans. Credit Suite can help you get the funding you need.

2 Comments

  1. Yaritza David says:

    I am new to all of this . I am trying to open a daycare and I am a minority woman as well. I would like to get as much resource as I can my brain right now is working in so many places, working towards a house, working in opening up a daycare center is my ultimate goal and finishing up my masters degree. I completed my my pre license workshop already now is finding a building and etc. Any advice would greatly be appreciated.

    • Janet Gershen-Siegel says:

      Hi!

      Well first off, your ambitions are really admirable!

      And it’s totally understandable as there are a lot of choices out there. One thing I have found in researching grants is they aren’t as well organized as they should be. So when you go to grants.gov, consider synonyms and related search terms. Like if you were looking for a grant in Atlanta, I would search both Atlanta and Georgia. See what I mean?

      Grants are also super-duper competitive, so the best thing I can tell you is to treat it a bit like your grad school application. That is, you follow the directions as closely as possible – but also like grad school, keep your options open. I would seriously suggest looking at as many options as possible. You may need to stitch your funding together from a bunch of sources. Grants, loans, credit, angel investors maybe? Angels can be family members or close friends. Of course, any time you do anything business-related with people you know, cross all the Ts and dot all the I’s (which means putting it all into writing) because – you never know. Always better to take a moment and avoid confusion.

      Oh and one more thing – for a daycare center, look into insurance and into zoning. You need an actual physical location of course (unlike if you were a web developer), so check with your Secretary of State to be absolutely certain you can open up shop where you want to. You’ll probably need some form of licensing, and that may include things like being certified in CPR. I say “may” because these things can vary from state to state and even from county to county.

      Good luck to you!! 🙂

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