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Invest in Small Business Resiliency

Small businesses are the heart and soul of our economy, the backbone of our communities, and they're working hard to recover from hardships left behind by the COVID-19 pandemic. With small businesses being America's largest employer, this unprecedented hardship puts millions of employees at risk, directly impacting the livelihood of families and communities across the country. 
 
GSBA and Comcast Washington co-created the Ready for Business Fund in 2020 to support small businesses. This spring, we're proud to return with our third round of funding, issuing $2,500 cash grants and support services to over 85 small businesses owned by LGBTQ+ community members; Black, Indigenous, and People of Color; and women - in addition to businesses located in rural areas across Washington State.

To date, the Ready for Business Fund has raised over $400,000 to support small business resiliency and has issued grants to over 130 recipients over two years.

Donate below to help us reach even more small businesses in need.

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By making a donation to the Ready for Business Fund, you are directly empowering small business owners and strengthening your community. Donations of any size can make a difference for small business owners in addressing fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, lost sales, and other working capital expenses that could have been remedied sooner if that COVID-19 pandemic not occurred.

Join the challenge and become a Ready for Business donor to strengthen the economic recovery for small and minority-owned businesses. Twenty percent of funds raised will be used for wrap-around services from GSBA including consulting, advertising, and membership for recipients, as well as administration of the grants.

For more information contact GSBA Deputy Director Ilona Lohrey (She/her) or call the office at 206-363-9188.


In the News

How a nonprofit helped this Seattle bakery survive the pandemic (KING 5 Evening)

Ready for Business Fund begins distribution of small business grants (425 Business)

Powerful partnership delivering lifeline to struggling Seattle small businesses (Crosscut)

Grant program for Hill and CD small businesses doubles in size (Capitol Hill Seattle Blog)

New grant fund moves money from big conglomerates to local small businesses
 (The Stranger)


Apply for Small Business Relief

The application period for the third round of the Ready for Business Fund is now open and will close on Sunday, June 26, 2022.

Too often, systemic barriers get in the way of people from marginalized backgrounds making their entrepreneurial dreams come true and establishing sustainable income for themselves, their families, and their communities. This can look like lacking capital investment, the reverberating impact of generational poverty, environmental factors, and more. The COVID-19 pandemic brought so many of these disparities front and center for small businesses owned by LGBTQ+ people; Black, Indigenous, and People of Color; and women. The Ready for Business Fund was established to help level the playing field for these communities, giving them a small boost so they can strengthen their business, give back to our local economies, and provide for themselves and their families.

Businesses who are selected for a grant from the Ready for Business Fund receive a $2,500 cash grant and wrap-around support services including GSBA membership, technical support, marketing, and consulting. This grant does not have to be repaid, and it can be used for any purpose to help the business in its resiliency. 

Priority will be given to small businesses within the communities who historically have less impact to resources through entrepreneurship and are impacted by systemic barriers, including those owned by LGBTQ+ people; Black, Indigenous, and People of Color; and women, as well as businesses located in rural areas.

Watch the video below to hear more about Ready for Business

 Ready for Business Fund_Round 3 Launch Video


Meet some of our Ready for Business Fund recipients!

Sixty-five LGBTQ-, BIPOC-, and women-owned small businesses receive first Ready for Business Fund grants

by GSBA Staff
| Oct 12, 2020

Sixty-five BIPOC-, LGBTQ-, and women-owned small businesses across the Seattle Metropolitan Area have been selected out of a pool of over 500 applicants to be the first recipients of Ready for Business Fund grants. Co-founded by GSBA and Comcast Washington this August to address mounting financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ready for Business Fund has provided recipients with $2,500 grants in addition to marketing and administrative wrap-around services, courtesy Comcast’s Effectv program. The grant application closed on Sept. 4, and the recipients were selected by a committee consisting of business, government, and community leaders throughout the area. 

The recipients include:

- Alchemists & Architects, LLC
- Amano Seattle
- BeUnique Agency
- BLKBRY, LLC
- Boujee Food & Things
- Cafe Pettirosso
- Cake House, LLC
- Century Ballroom, LLC
- Chloe Collyer Photo
- Choice Produce
- Communion Restaurant & Bar
- Dirty Dog Hot Dogs
- Downtown House Cleaning 
- El Mercado Latino
- Elliana Pauline Lewis
- Emazing Photography
- Emerson Salon
- Epiphanies of Equity, LLC
- Ethio Mini Market
- Fit Bar Superfood Cafe
- Fruitsuper
- Fuji Sushi Seattle
- Get It Done Hair Salon & Spa
- Hahu Abissina Restaurant, LLC
- Hot Chicks Dog Walking Co.
- Idman Childcare
- Jackson General Store/Rimna’s Market
- Juice Emporium
- Khongkaew, Inc.
- Koplin Del Rio Gallery
- Los Agaves
- Meekong Bar
- Mi La Cay Restaurant
- Mountainfoxgoods
- Namasgay, Inc.
- Nile’s Edge Healing Arts
- Northwest Polite Society
- Nue
- Oma Bap
- Perfect Pronouns
- Perri Rhoden
- The London Plane
- Queer Bar
- Ramseur
- Reggie’s Computer Repair
- Resistencia Coffee
- Retail Therapy
- Seeking Kombucha
- Simone Shaw Style Studio
- Sleaq S and S
- Smith Law, LLC
- Stock & Pantry
- SUSU Dessert Bar
- Tai Tung, Inc.
- Taurus Ox
- Temple Pastries
- Thai Star
- The Art Sob
- The Wildrose
- Trap Vinyasa
- Two Doors Down
- Virago Gallery
- We Free Hearts
- Yolo West Coast

Over $200,000 was raised within one month for the first round of recipients, with Comcast Washington seeding the Fund with a $50,000 gift in early August, which was followed by an additional $50,000 investment from Comcast in September. T-Mobile contributed $25,000, while AT&T, BECU, Grace Church Seattle, Harborstone Credit Union, Microsoft, Puget Sound Energy, Sanctuary Church Seattle, Seattle Storm, US Bank, Verity Credit Union, and several more generous community members also donated to the Fund.

With well over 100 Seattle businesses permanently shuttering their doors since the pandemic began earlier this spring, the Ready for Business Fund seeks to help small businesses owned by marginalized community members survive the economic downturn. Fund applicants reported devastating impact, including up to 85 percent loss of annual revenue, being forced to lay off their entire staff, and significant loss of business due to proximity to demonstrations in Seattle. Businesses surveyed about the grants said the funding will be used on necessities such as paying for rent, bills, payroll, and groceries.

A second round of funding and grant distribution will soon be announced. The 435 applicants who weren’t selected during the first round of funding will remain in the pool to be considered as new grants are issued.