Wednesday, May 05, 2021
The UNCW Small Business and Technology Development Center has been awarded a $64,940 grant from the North Carolina Small Business and Technology Development Center to expand assistance to small businesses and entrepreneurs in response to COVID-19.
“Since the beginning of COVID-19, we have been working hand-in-hand with clients to help them with the best strategy to succeed,” said Heather McWhorter, NC Small Business and Technology Development Center regional director and SBTDC director. “With entrepreneurs and small businesses, it is never a one-size-fits-all approach, and that is where the SBTDC’s team of professional business counselors come in.”
The SBTDC provides free and confidential, non-biased assistance to entrepreneurs and small businesses in six counties in southeast NC. The funding supplements the U.S. Small Business Administration award so the center can continue to provide the ongoing high level of one-on-one assistance to the region, she said.
The center assisted 400 entrepreneurs and small businesses with one-on-one assistance in the first quarter of 2021. Currently, the staff is focusing on the second round of the Paycheck Protection Program and the Shuttered Venue Operator Grant that recently opened. The Paycheck Protection Program, better known as PPP, helps small businesses keep workers on the payroll. The Shuttered Venue Operator Grant is a new COVID-19 relief grant designed to help “shuttered venues” such as live venue operators, theatrical producers, live performing arts organizations, museums, and aquariums that suffered a decrease in revenues as a result of COVID-19.
The staff is also preparing for the opening of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund. This grant will provide emergency assistance for restaurants and other eligible businesses to keep their doors open.
“Our clients are in a variety of stages, from surviving to thriving, so the center staff is helping with disaster programs, exporting, selling to the government, and even starting new businesses,” she added.
Visit the SBTDC website to learn more about small business disaster programs.