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COVID-19 Small Business Funding Programs & Resources

March 30, 2020

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We have compiled a list of COVID-19 emergency funding programs and resources currently available on a local and national level for small businesses struggling with economics. This list will be updated accordingly as we become aware of other relief programs.

According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), small businesses:

  • Represent 99.7% of all employer firms
  • Employ about half of all private sector employees
  • Have generated 65% of net new jobs over the past 17 years
  • Made up 97.5% of all identified exporters

Federal Funding Support

SBA CARES Act – Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program

What is it? Loans up to $2M with 30 year terms. Small business interest rates are 3.75% and non-profits are 2.75%. First month’s payments will be deferred a full year from date of promissory note.
Who is eligible to use the loan? Small business and non-profits in all U.S. states and territories.
How to apply: Visit or

SBA CARES Act – Paycheck Protection Program

What is it? SBA-backed local lender loans of up to a maximum of the lesser of $10M or 2.5 times the average monthly payroll costs- including wages for employees making under $100,000, as well as expenses for paid sick leave, healthcare and other benefits. The maximum interest rate is 4% with a loan term of up to 10 years. No personal guarantee or collateral is required for the loan. Payments are deferred up to 6-12 months.
Who is eligible? As described in the Small Business Act, small businesses including eligible non-profits, Veterans organizations, Tribal concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contracts with 500 or fewer employees. Also, businesses within specific industries as laid out by the SBA’s size standards with more than 500 employees. 
How to apply: Contact your local bank to find out if they are offering SBA-backed loans or find a bank in your area that is an eligible lender to contact with this link: .

Private/Non-Profit Companies’ Funding

Facebook – Boost Small Business

What is it? $100 million in cash and ad credits fund
Who is eligible? Any small business (between 2 and 50 employees) that has been in business at least a year and in or near a location where where Facebook operates.
How to apply: Applications for New York and Seattle open April 18th. Those for the San Francisco Bay Area open April 20th and all other locations open April 22nd. See the link above for more details.

Harbert Management Corporation HERO Small Business Relief Fund

What is it? Harbert Management Corporation HERO Small Business Relief Fund has committed $1.1M to support local Birmingham businesses who are being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Who is eligible? Small businesses that are currently in operation, located in the Birmingham Designated Market Area and registered with the Internal Revenue Service and Alabama Department of Revenue.
How to apply: Applications open April 20th. Visit the link above to apply.

James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund

What is it? The James Beard Foundation has launched a fund that will gather support from corporate, foundation, and individual donors to provide micro-grants.
Who is eligible? Small, independent restaurants that have an immediate need for funds to pay set operating expenses and survive the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to apply: Applications are not yet available, but you can fill out your contact information via the following link to be contacted when they are.

Kangaroo – Free Small Business Security Kit

What is it? Kangaroo is offering small businesses the opportunity to receive a free, self-installed security monitoring kit for three months. All that is required is an $80 refundable security deposit.
Who is eligible? Small business owners in the United States.
How to apply: Apply through the form in the link above.
Deadline: April 15, 2020 or while supplies last (10,000 units allocated)

Nav Small Business Grant Contest

What is it? Nav is hosting a Small Business Grant Contest. The Grand Prize is a $10,000 grant; 1st Runner-Up will receive $2,000; and 2nd Runner-Up will receive $1,000.
Who is eligible? Any existing or new Nav customers. Account sign up is free.
How to apply: Follow the instructions via the link above.
Deadline: May 30th, 2020

The Spanx by Sara Blakely Foundation Red Backpack Fund

What is it? Spanx’s founder Sara Blakely has donated $5M to support female entrepreneurs who are feeling the economic effects of COVID-19. $5,000 will be allocated to 1,000 individuals.
Who is eligible? Female entrepreneurs in the United States.
How to apply: Applications are currently paused and will reopen May 4, June 1, July 6, and August 3. Sign up for updates via the following link:

Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund 

What is it? Verizon is partnering with LISC to provide a $2.5M relief fund, offering grants of up to $10,000.
Who is eligible? Businesses facing immediate financial turmoil due, especially entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises that don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital in historically underserved communities.
How to apply: Applications have not yet opened. Sign up for updates here:

Local Funding

Bham Strong Fund

What is it? BhamStrong Fund, is designed to provide zero-interest, 180-day loans, of up to $25,000 (average loan size of $10,000) to prevent staff reductions and offset losses related to COVID-19.
Who is eligible? Small businesses (less than 50 employees)
How to apply: Visit
Deadline: The first round of applications are now closed. Sign up for email updates to be notified should a second round of applications be opened.

Mountain Brook Restaurant Employee Support Initiative

What is it? Welch Foundation Group Financial Relief is offering a $100,000 fund with grants up to $2,000 for Mountain Brook, AL restaurant owners and $500 for employees.
Who is eligible? Mountain Brook, AL restaurant owners and Mountain Brook, AL restaurant employees.
How to apply: Fill out application found in link above and send your completed application to either:
– Kimberly Reynolds:
– Beth Moody:
– Via fax: 205-879-7979

Resources/Guides for Small Businesses

Business Interruption Insurance Policy Review

What is it? The Birmingham BAR Association has legal professional volunteers offering to review and provide guidance on your Business Interruption Insurance policy and what is covered.
Who is eligible? Birmingham business owners needing assistance.
How to apply: Fill out the form in the link above.

SCORE – Free Business Mentorship

What is it? Free remote mentorship and online workshops to help business owners navigate applying for funding and keeping your business afloat during these unprecedented times.
Who is eligible? Small business owners in the United States.
How to apply: Visit and apply for mentorship.

Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

Disaster Assistance & Business Continuity Assistance

Download Alabama’s SBDC Disaster Planning and Recovery workbook and Business Emergency Plan here:

If you know of any funds or resources for small business owners, please email Stephanie Hill at

Looking for other resources for small businesses during this time of COVID-19? Check out our article about “How You Can Support Local Businesses During the COVID-19 Pandemic” here.


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