New Grant Funding for Childcare Providers, Nonprofits and Businesses
Thanks to a major new infusion of CARES Act funding from Thurston County, Thurston Strong is expanding the volume and range of funding support available to local organizations. Over $7 Million in grant funding is now available through the fund categories described below.
Together with prior outlays, this new funding brings Thurston Strong reinvestment in the local economy to just under $12 Million. Other contributors include the Cities of Lacey, Olympia and Tumwater, Washington State, The Community Foundation and Thurston Economic Development Council.
While we know it isn’t enough to undo the damage community businesses and nonprofits have suffered over the past six months, we hope it will help sustain them until conditions trend upward once again.
Childcare Stabilization Fund
Childcare providers have long operated with thin margins, and the pandemic has only exacerbated the situation. Yet, more working families are returning to work and in-person schooling is on hold. The Childcare Stabilization Fund provides temporary support grants to offset COVIC-related impacts for local entities, including licensed facilities and a growing number of non-profit daycares operating in partnership with local school districts. Applications will be reviewed in the order received through October 31 or until funds are depleted.
To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Childcare Stabilization button.
Nonprofit Grant Fund
Local nonprofits have seen steep declines in revenue. Yet, we depend on them more than ever to provide essential services. And we want to make sure they are still there when we get on the other side of the pandemic. Applications will be reviewed in the order received through October 31 or until funds are depleted.
To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Nonprofit Grant button.
Restaurant and Retail Grant Fund
Independently-owned retail and restaurant operators have experienced an outsized economic impact during the pandemic. The Restaurant and Retail Fund provides bridge grants to those fighting to remain open or attempting to reopen under new and difficult conditions. Applications will be reviewed in the order received through October 31 or until funds are depleted.
To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Restaurant and Retail Grant button.
Agriculture Business Grant Fund
Farmers, farmers markets, value-add food manufacturers and food and farm coops have experienced declining markets, labor challenges and supply chain ruptures. The Thurston Strong Ag Grant is designed to help them with response and recovery efforts. Applications will be reviewed in the order received through October 31 or until funds are depleted.
To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Agricultural Business Grant button.
Continued Grant Funding for Microbusinesses and Childcare Providers
In addition to the new round of investment, grant funding remains available within several ongoing programs, including:
Micro-Business Stand-Up Grant Fund
Funding is still available through the original $1,500 Thurston Strong Micro-Business Grant Program. To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Micro-Business Grant button. Grants will be issued until October 31.
Childcare Provider Grant Fund
Funding is still available through the original Thurston Strong Childcare Provider Grant Program. Grants range from $1,500 to $13,300 depending on the size of licensed (or enrolled) care capacity. To review eligibility requirements and other details, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Childcare Provider Grant Program button. Grants will be issued until October 31.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Resources
Thurston Strong still has disposable masks and 1-gallon bottles of hand sanitizer. All businesses and nonprofits are eligible, including those who have previously received orders. Requests will be accepted until resources are depleted. To obtain masks or sanitizer, please visit www.thurstonstrong.org and click on the Order PPE Resources button.
Scale-Up Business Training
Thurston County grant funds will also be used to provide technical training for eighty businesses seeking to recalibrate their business models. Each training grant is valued at $4,000.
Washington State Grants Available for Nonprofits
The Department of Commerce is partnering with School’s Out Washington to distribute $9 million in CARES Act funding to respond to the impact of COVID-19 by supporting programs serving school age kids and young adults facing significant challenges to educational and economic opportunity. School’s Out Washington developed application criteria and will award grants between $10,000 – $50,000, based on an organization’s 2019 budget. Priority consideration will be given to programs that serve youth with lower access to educational opportunity and whose leaders are reflective of the populations they serve.
For more information: http://youthdevrelief.schoolsoutwashington.org/
Grants Available for Olympia Arts and Culture Organizations
The City of Olympia is offering matching grants up to $5,000 for arts projects to registered non-profits. To be eligible, organizations must have a minimum two-year history serving Olympia. Approval is based on innovative and diverse projects, organizational strengths, and capacity for community engagement. In 2021, the City will award up to $20,000 in grants for the year.
New CARES Act Funding available for Arts and Culture Nonprofits in Washington
In partnership with Washington Department of Commerce, the Washington State Arts Commission (ArtsWA) is now accepting CARES Act Relief Grant applications from Washington State-based nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, including tribal organizations, and fiscally sponsored groups impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizations are eligible to apply for up to $10,000 from a total of $1.5 million made possible by a grant awarded by the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury.
Grants will be awarded and distributed in December. Eligible organizations must have federal tax-exempt status or be sponsored by a qualifying non-profit that has arts, culture, and/or heritage in their mission. Applications will be evaluated under three criteria: Financial need, Arts + Cultural Programming, and Communities Served. To ensure geographic distribution, applications will be evaluated by regional panels serving the northwest, southwest, central, and eastern regions of the state. Applications will be accepted through 5:00 p.m. on Friday, October 23, 2020.
Thurston Strong will continue to search for new revenue to grow and expand grant and community reinvestment programs. Updated information will be shared accordingly. Stay strong Thurston.
MORE INFORMATION FOR BUSINESSES REGARDING COVID-19
HELP FOR SMALL LACEY BUSINESSES THAT NEED CASH NOW
For more information regarding assistance to businesses, please visit the Resources Section.
How Businesses Will Re-Open in Washington
As the flattening of the curve of the numbers of cases of COVID-19 progresses, businesses in the State of Washington will reopen in phases. These are the phases and the timing announced by the State of Washington.
Thurston Chamber of Commerce Smart Restart Tool Kit
A successful transition back to work and reopening businesses is pivotal in the health and safety of employees and customers as well as the restart of the economy. To assist you in re-opening, The Thurston Chamber of Commerce developed this Smart Restart Toolkit to help you develop a reopen plan that breaks down the information into manageable action plans and checklists.
Here is a link to the tool kit.
The Washington State Small Business Liaison Team
The Washington State Small Business Liaison Team (SBLT) has been working on converting their Live Small Business Requirements and Resources (SBRR) Workshops into a Webinar based program. In the process, they realized that the information business owners need right now is about getting ready to operate safely; doing business while caring for the health and safety of their employees and customers.
In these sessions business owners will get to interact with liaisons from Employment Security Department (ESD), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Revenue (DOR), Department of Labor & Industry (L&I), Department of Enterprise Services (DES) and the Governor’s Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance (ORIA).
Information on the webinars is available here.
Information on the team is available here.