24 Mar RESOURCES FOR SMALL BUSINESSES IMPACTED BY COVID-19
As our city reckons with the short-term impact of the COVID-19 outbreak and anticipates additional long-term effects, we at Made In Baltimore are focused on responding to the needs of small businesses that will undoubtedly face challenges due to the economic slowdown.
We want to connect our members with financial relief options, development opportunities, and resources for adapting to new ways of commerce. Below our impact survey, you’ll find our comprehensive list of resources for small business owners.
COVID-19 Small Business Impact Survey
Made In Baltimore has been working closely with our partners at Impact Hub, Innovation Works, Open Works, and BCAN to coordinate an effective response to this rapidly changing situation that prioritize the needs of our local small business network.
We’ve developed an impact survey to better understand what you need right now, as well in the coming months, so that we can target assistance with laser focus where it is most critical. We will use this information to advocate for funding, technical assistance, and resources to address any other needs you report.
Please complete the survey as soon as you can. To find it, click here.
Emergency Relief Options for Businesses
The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides low-interest disaster loans to businesses. To find more information on disaster loans, click here. You can also download a guide to securing these loans here. The SBA’s website also includes a helpful guide to additional resources for business owners and employers, which you can find here.
The Maryland Health Connect is conducting an emergency one-month special open enrollment through April 15. If healthcare is a concern for you or your business, find more information here.
The Maryland Department of Labor has launched a COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund to support businesses undergoing economic stresses due to the pandemic by preventing or minimizing the duration of unemployment resulting from layoffs. Find more information here.
The Maryland Department of Commerce currently offers three key options for small business owners:
Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Loan Fund — Loans up to $50,000 (not to exceed three months of cash operating expenses) open to Maryland businesses impacted by the COVID-19 with fewer than 50 employees.
Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Grant Fund — Grants up to $10,000 (not to exceed three months of cash operating expenses) for Maryland businesses and nonprofits impacted by the COVID-19 with fewer than 50 employees.
Maryland COVID-19 Emergency Relief Manufacturing Fund — This $5 million incentive program helps Maryland manufacturers to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) that is urgently needed by hospitals and health-care workers. We expect the application for this fund to be live by Friday, March 27.
We also recommend staying up to date with Maryland’s COVID-19 business response. Find this information online here, and subscribe to get updates as they are released.
Meanwhile, in our home city…
The Baltimore Development Corporation has launched the site Baltimore Together to centralize a repository of information and resources for both residents and businesses. You can also check out this one-pager with information about modifications to citywide infrastructure as a result of COVID-19.
The incredible staff at the Enoch Pratt Free Library have compiled guides to Maryland unemployment services and Maryland small business resources, and are happy to offer one-on-one advising via email.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Production
In addition to the state’s forthcoming $5 million Emergency Relief Manufacturing Fund mentioned above, we want to point our members to other ways they can connect with PPE production incentives to help meet demand for this critical need from hospitals and healthcare workers.
Made In Baltimore’s Home Sewing Network — Calling our members who may be available to participate in a network of home-based sewers producing masks, gowns and other PPE critical to support healthcare providers responding to COVID-19. If you’re interested, please fill out this form.
Open Works Makers Unite! Face Shield Project — Open Works has launched a collaborative project to 3D print face shields. They welcome help from any members with access to 3D printers. Learn more here.
Maryland Made to Save Lives — The Regional Manufacturing Institute of Maryland is building a network of Maryland manufacturing companies making components, technologies, materials and products needed for the medical supply chain to fight COVID-19. Learn more here.
Maryland Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) — COVID-19: HOW CAN YOU HELP? Similar to the above, any companies seeking to meet the demand for medical equipment should contact MEP. Learn more here.
We know filling out multiple intake forms can feel repetitive, but registering your information with a wider range of organizations will increase your chances of plugging into opportunities for small businesses able to offer this critical support.
More Options for Your Business
Flying Cloud Fulfillment — This local eCommerce fulfillment center is currently offering at-cost postage services to Made In Baltimore members. No fulfillment costs, no storage fees, no cost for boxes and mailers, and no account management fees. Just postage. They are eager to support small businesses who may be transitioning heavily to e-commerce. Interested businesses should contact Chris Myers at email@example.com.
Facebook Small Business Grants Program — Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses which may be experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19. Learn more here.
Expanded Kiva Loan Program — Loan fundraising platform Kiva is making its 0% interest loans more accessible to small businesses impacted by COVD-19, with expanded eligibility, larger loans, and a grace period for new borrowers. Read more about these updates here.
Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund — Verizon and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation are partnering to offer grants of up to $10,000 to small businesses facing immediate financial pressure because of COVID-19, with a particular focus on entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and enterprises from historically underserved communities who may not have access to flexible capital. Learn more here.
We will add to this post as we receive more resources to share with our members. Updated March 30, 15:45.
While we work together to adjust to new ways of doing business, we at Made In Baltimore will keep our energy focused on responding effectively to the needs of our members. Please take our survey (again, find it here), but do not hesitate to get in touch if you have questions, concerns, or ideas for us — we always want to know how we can best help you. Meanwhile, we sincerely hope you and your loved ones keep safe.