Currently, financial uncertainty is staring us in the face, but there is a ray of hope. The evolving business scenario had earlier unveiled the fact that when more women build their own businesses, economies grow too. Women-led companies across the US (despite rapid growth and great potential), face many challenges when it comes to scaling and expansion.
So, on US Independence Day, here’s taking a look at some incentives provided by the government for women wanting to start their own businesses.
I Providing Opportunities for Women’s Economic Rise (POWER)
The US Department of State’s Providing Opportunities for Women’s Economic Rise (POWER) initiative, was launched in March 2019, targetting women business owners to give them training and support they need, to grow their own businesses. This initiative is a good example of how the US State Department and the administration are moving ahead to stress women’s inclusion across all levels of decision-making in all sectors. With POWER, the focus is on women as the change makers, entrepreneurs, and business leaders. Read more https://www.state.gov/dipnote-u-s-department-of-state-official-blog/empowering-women-
II Federal Small-Business Grants for Women
There are some federal government grants for small-business owners that are aimed at specific purposes – such as research and development projects, or for businesses in rural areas. Here are some of them:
• Grants.gov Grants.gov is a database of federally sponsored grants, including grants for small businesses. Although these grants are not exclusive to women-owned businesses, this database is a great place to start if you’re looking for free financing.
• Program for Investors in Microentrepreneurs (PRIME)
Although the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) coordinates some grant programs, the agency doesn’t typically offer grant funding directly to small businesses; but SBA helps Americans start, build, and grow businesses.With the PRIME program, however, the SBA provides federal grants to microenterprise development organizations so that they can offer training, technical assistance and guidance to disadvantaged microentrepreneurs.
These grants are available to nonprofit, private, state, local or tribal-run organizations, including those that focus on working with women-owned small businesses. https://www.sba.gov/document/information-notice–program-investors-
III State and Local Small-Business Grants for Women
Women can also seek out grants at the state and municipal levels. And, here are some places to help you get started:
• Women’s Business Centers
The SBA sponsors more than 100 Women’s Business Centers nationwide. They are designed to help women entrepreneurs with business development and access to capital and they help you find small-business grants and loans that you may qualify for. There are Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), that are SBA-sponsored around the country ( typically based at colleges and universities). SBDCs offer free, one-on-one business consulting, such as help with developing a business plan, researching markets and finding financing — including grants, business loans and crowdfunding.
• Economic Development Administration
Every state and many cities have economic development resources focused on promoting strong local economies. For instance, New York has a number of economic development districts, such as the Lake Champlain – Lake George Regional Planning Board, which helps local men and women-owned businesses access state and federal funding.
• Minority Business Development Agency Centers
The MBDA operates a network of business centers across the country that are designed to help minority business owners access capital, secure contracts and develop financial strategies. Your local MBDA business center can work with you to identify the right financing options for your business, including federal, state and private small-business grants.
The MBDA also runs the Enterprising Women of Color Initiative, or EWOC, to support minority women in their business endeavors. The EWOC provides access to resources, events and other opportunities for women minority-owned businesses.
Apart from the above there are many private small-business grants for women. Some private corporations and organizations offer business grants for women like Amber Grant, Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards Program , SoGal Black Founder Startup Grant, FedEx Small Business Grant, National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grant, Halstead Grant and so on.