As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads across the world, the United States’ economy is suffering. Businesses big and small are closing their doors, and hardworking people are losing jobs, struggling to put food on the table, and drowning in unexpected healthcare costs.
Thankfully, both the federal government and other groups recognize the need to provide financial assistance to small business owners, entrepreneurs, artists, freelancers and independent contractors. In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, unemployment benefits, grants, and funds are helping freelancers, artists, and SMBs survive.
If you’re a boss babe who needs some financial assistance to keep going, check out these funds, grants, and loans to help you make it through COVID.
Funds and Grants for Freelancers
Women freelancers are some of the most economically vulnerable workers in America right now. The companies and contracts that used to pay your bills are cutting costs—and that often means fewer jobs for freelancers. Here are some places you can look to for help during these uncertain times:
The Freelancers Union has cooperated with companies like Fiverr and Upwork to create a Freelancers Relief Fund that helps freelancers weather this storm. The fund offers “financial assistance of up to $1,000 to freelancers who are experiencing sudden hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, whether as a result of illness, lost work, or caregiving responsibilities.” You can use this money to pay for food, utilities, and more.
The Freelance Co-Op, a group established to empower freelancers with the resources they need to run their own businesses, has created a COVID-19 Emergency Fund. These funds can be used for medical bills, utilities, food and even childcare. It’s important to note that there is a stipulation that those who receive funding donate the same amount to a similar charity when they get back on their feet.
Financial Assistance for Small Businesses
Small businesses often run with little to no financial safety net, which means the COVID-19 quarantine is forcing many women-run businesses to permanently close their doors. Luckily, there are funds and grants popping up to help keep SMBs afloat.
The federal government and SBA are working with state Governors to offer financial relief as well as business counseling to small businesses who are struggling due to Coronavirus. The SBA is providing SMBs a low-interest loan with a long repayment schedule, if needed. You can use the funds to pay “fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact.”
Business For All grants. In partnership with Verizon, the digital fundraising and advocacy platform Hello Alice is offering emergency grants of up to $10,000 for companies impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. $10,000 COVID-19 Business for All Grants are awarded on a rolling basis. General Business for All Grant applications are due September 25, 2020 at 12:00 am PT.
Google announced an “$800+ million commitment to support small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), health organizations and governments, and health workers on the frontline of this global pandemic.” Though they aren’t offering direct grants to small businesses, they are providing SMBs with active Google Ads accounts $340 million in Google Ads credits. According to Google, “credit notifications will appear in their Google Ads accounts and can be used at any point until the end of 2020 across our advertising platforms.”
Funds and Grants for Creatives, Artists, and Musicians
The Creator Fund from the email marketing company ConvertKit is offering financial assistance of up to $500 for artists and small business owners. Supporting Creators in Need.
MusiCares is aware of the enormous financial burden to those whose creative practices and incomes are being adversely impacted by COVID-19. In response, The Recording Academy® and its affiliated charitable foundation MusiCares® have established the COVID-19 Relief Fund to help the music community affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Sweet Relief Musicians Fund provides financial assistance to all types of career musicians and music industry workers who are struggling to make ends meet while facing illness, disability, or age-related problems. In other words, Healing Musicians in Need.
- Alice COVID-19 Business Resource Center
- Small Businesses: Understanding the Paycheck Protection Program
- Funds for Freelancers, Creatives Losing Income During Coronavirus
- Small Business Grants for Companies Hit by Covid-19
- 55 Federal, State and Nonprofit Relief Efforts and Funds to Help You Through the Coronavirus Pandemic
Melissa Stewart is the founder of SheOwnsIt.com. She is a Purveyor of Possibility, Entrepreneur Advocate and Coffee Addict. She believes that behind every successful woman is her story. What’s your story?