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Locating small business grants is a massive task -- there are just so many of them. In addition to federal sources, listed below are a number of other sources that you may find helpful.
Grants for small business are typically geared to companies that serve underdeveloped areas or those that can provide employment to core areas. The range of opportunities is astounding. Some grant opportunities are for a nominal amount, only $100,000 or so, while other grants reach into the millions.
The term "grant" too often refers to a "gimme" program. Grants are not "gimme" programs.
Grants are funds disbursed in order to address specific problems.
They are contracted jobs.
Sometimes looking for grant opportunities means looking beyond the formal announcements. Find a problem yourself and propose to solve it.
Do you, for instance, know of a housing development that would benefit from pest extermination services that your company could provide? Don't wait for the proposal to be announced. Approach the agency that either has the funding, or has access to the funding, and get a project going.
Or do you know of a region with high unemployment, and a business that needs employees? Your training program for the unemployed workers could be funded very nicely from a number of sources.
Rarely will a granting agency simply plunk down the money and say, "Here, go get the job done." Far more often it is a coalition of groups that may fund your project. And a strong business proposal will be part of the package.
Following are some resources to help your small business grants get put in place.
Deadlines for current and upcoming grants in many different categories. From the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
Foundations, fundraising help, help with grants, international sites, non-profit news and organizations, jobs, and more.
A listing of state-specific directories that support locally based projects and organizations. States are often very receptive to developing small business grant opportunities.
IIf you would like your organization to appear in this listing, please contact me with details.
J. Helen McAllister
Business Funding Specialist
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