Texas small-business owners get leg up during shutdown
Business owners and entrepreneurs are especially vulnerable during a public health crisis that results in a stay-at-home order. During the COVID-19 pandemic small, local businesses found themselves disadvantaged when $376 billion made available through the CARES Act was swallowed up by larger companies. As soon as Congress announced the second round of CARES funding, Prairie View A&M University Cooperative Extension in Texas launched a loan-packaging program for limited-resource business owners and entrepreneurs.
“Preparing Your Business for Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans During COVID-19” provided virtual interactive sessions and hands-on assistance to small-business clients, allowing them to efficiently complete loan applications and apply for other disaster funds and grants.
More than 2,700 people learned about the program through a combination of YouTube videos, social media engagement and personal contacts. To date, 92 small-business owners participated in the training series and received more than $500,000 in loans and grants. Participants have applied for another $333,000 in business grants that have yet to be awarded.