Free Grants and Loans for Minority and Women Owned Businesses in Missouri

Last Updated on August 23, 2023 by Hannah Stevens

You can find small business financial assistance programs offered for women or minority businesses in the state of Missouri. There are a broad variety of offered resources, free grants, loans, free mentoring, counseling, and other services. Furthermore, this is a list of up to date grants and loans for Black, Latino, veteran, and other minority owned businesses or entrepreneurs, as well as grants for women owned businesses.

The federal government or the state of Missouri may offer assistance. Corporations, non-profit organizations, banks, credit unions, and other lenders can also issue low-cost loans or grants. All small to mid-sized businesses, entrepreneurs, or start-ups can apply. However, a part of the funds are allocated for minority, MWBE, Black, or BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, or People of Color) owned businesses in Missouri.

Furthermore, the majority of the money is available for businesses in Kansas City, St. Louis, Columbia, Springfield, and other cities. However, assistance for businesses is available all across the state of Missouri. The funds are offered for  Black, Asian, LGBTQ+, or other disadvantaged groups.

Small Business Loans and Free Grant Programs for Women or Minorities in Missouri

This list is up to date. Every program has its own application process, and terms and conditions. However, there are agencies that can issue loans and/or free grants.

Year Round Free Grants, Business Coaching and Financial Assistance

There are financial assistance programs, grants, free coaching, and other resources run all year. Below, you can find information sorted by county, city, or region. You can also find other monthly grants, loans, and support available throughout the year.

Central Missouri Area, Columbia

Sharp End Entrepreneurial Development Fund

Businesses in Columbia may apply for free grants from the Sharp End Entrepreneurial Development Fund. The community raised money for these grants or micro-loans. Financial assistance is available for women, minority owned businesses, including veterans or LGBTQ+. There is also free coaching, networking, and advice from experiences and successful business owners and entrepreneurs. Click the link above to apply or donate.

This programme is similar to one of the free grants and loans for minority and women owned businesses in Montana, the Prospera Business Network.

Central Missouri Community Action 

The Central Missouri Community Action serves Columbia, Missouri, and 9 surrounding counties. The focus is on economic development, specifically for disadvantaged areas and the MWBE community. The non-profit community action agency works in conjunction with the Women’s Center and Kiva as a 0%, interest-free business loan Trustee. They offer free counseling, career coaching, small business assistance, and other assistance for women, minorities, veterans, and businesses located in low income areas. Click the link above to find out more.

Interest-free Loans, Counseling, Grants and More in Kansas City

G.I.F.T. Funds

G.I.F.T. Funds assists the majority of Black owned businesses in Kansas City. There are two grants issued every month: either 25K or 50K. The financial assistance will assist disadvantaged owned businesses expand, increase their sales, and stabilize. Furthermore, donations from the community fund the GIFT program. Click the link above to apply.

Metro Area and Kansas City

The metro area and Kansas City have many non-profits and quasi government organizations to assist minority and women owned small businesses and start-ups. These include:


KCSourceLink is an organization which provides a broad variety of entrepreneurship and small business assistance programs. Available assistance includes help in writing business plans, applying for capital (bank loan, free grants, crowdfunding, or anything else), networking events, and more. It is designed to assist people in starting and/or expanding a business. They focus on assisting women, veterans, and minority owned businesses in Kansas City. Click the link above for more details.

St. Louis MWBE Assistance Programs

Gardner Capital

BIPOC owned businesses in St. Louis and Springfield, Missouri can apply for 0% interest loans from Gardner Capital and Kiva Partnership. This non-profit/private company partnership that assists MWBE, veteran, LGTBQ+, and disadvantaged companies receive the financial assistance they require. Moreover, the environmental sector is a key focus. Click the link above to apply.

Maryville University – Digital Development Project

Maryville University and the Digital Development Project offer free Digital Marketing assistance for BIPOC owned businesses in St. Louis. The college is associated with the Urban League, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Heartland St. Louis Black Chamber of Commerce, and other nonprofits to assist small businesses with SEO, internet, online marketing, e-commerce, and all of their digital needs. Additionally, advisors help clients in obtaining certification, approval for loans or free government grants. Click the link above for more details.

Minority Entrepreneurship Collaborative Center for Advancement (MECCA)

People of color owned businesses in St. Louis may receive financial assistance from Harris-Stowe State University (HSSU) Minority Entrepreneurship Collaborative Center for Advancement (MECCA) program. There are several resources available. You may receive assistance in marketing, SEO, accounting, financial management, creating “pitches,” and more. Additionally, they offer assistance in finding, applying for free grants, low-cost loans, and other aid. Click the link above to find more details.

St. Louis Development Corporation

The St. Louis Development Corporation has many centers located across the city. Their goal is to support small businesses and start-ups in low-income neighborhoods, provide capital for disadvantaged businesses, ensure women, veterans, LGBTQ+, and minorities receive the help they require, and more. The Northside Economic Empowerment Centre is one of the locations. Click the link above to find out more about the corporation, including contact information and addresses.


WEPOWER is located in St. Louis. This non-profit organization, in partnership with KIVA, provides  interest-free microloans for small minority owned businesses. Moreover, they offer assistance programs called Elevate/Elevar for Latino and Black owned businesses within the city. These include microloans, free mentoring, advice from accountants or attorneys, workspace, and more services. Click the link above to apply.

This programme is similar to one of the free grants and loans for minority and women owned businesses in Mississippi, the Higher Purpose Company.

Greater St. Louis Diverse Business Accelerator

The Greater St. Louis Diverse Business Accelerator provides a broad range of assistance programs for women, LGBTQ+, veteran, disabled, and minority business owners. The clients receive information on how to raise capital, including free grants or microloans. Additionally, there is mentoring for MWBE businesses, free publicity, help in starting or expanding a company, and more. Click the link above to learn more about the St. Louis accelerator.