Small Business Grants for Minorities

Last Updated on August 7, 2022 by Danielle McDonald

The United States, known as the land of opportunity, has welcomed more people from across the globe for the past years, making it more diversified than ever. Minorities refer to people whose ethnicity is foreign to the country. According to the 2020 Census, a 276% increase was recorded in the multiracial population, accounting for 33.8 million people. Moreover, there are 49.9 people who belong to the ‘some other race’ category, while 46.9 million of them belong to the African-American population. Some ethnicities who are considered a minority are Asians at 24 million people, American-Indian and Alaska Native at 9.7 million people, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander at 1.6 million people, and Hispanic or Latino at 62.1 million people. These people are entitled to different federal grants that the government offers to widen their horizons and to help them access life-changing opportunities such as professional growth and advanced education. In this article, I will explore and discuss these grants so you can learn more about them. 

What is Federal Minority Business Grants?

One of the opportunities that minorities may pursue is manifesting their entrepreneurial aspirations and starting their own businesses. While this may mean facing a rough start and challenging financial responsibilities, the government is willing to assist them in their business ventures by primarily providing financial assistance that they can use to start establishing their brand in the market. The government realizes and acknowledges the significance of this matter as it believes in their economic visions and in their ability to contribute to the employment rate of the country; hence, the U.S Small Business Administration’s 8(a) Business Development Program exists to help people of minorites grow and develop their businesses by providing additional assistance such training workshops, technical guidance, and counseling and management.

Who are eligible for Minority grants?

Minority grants are not limited to people with various ethnicities. They are available to people with disabilities, to low-income individuals, to women, and to people who are a part of the LGBTQA+ community. 

List of Business Grants Options for Minorities

Now that you know who are eligible for these grants, here is a list of business grants options that you can apply for if you are interested:

  • Small Business Funding / Management
  • Start-up / Expansion Business Capital
  • Home Business Assistance
  • Women-Owned Business Funding
  • Small Business Loans
  • Minority-Owned Business Funding
  • Private Money / Venture Capital

Starting a business can be too expensive, especially if you are financially struggling or if you only have enough funds for your daily living expenses. The grants above are allocated for your different business needs. If you are ready to take bold financial decisions with their help, you may click this link and fill out the registration form.

List of Personal Grants Options for Minorities

Personal grants are financial assistance or services that can be used for different purposes, including the following:

  • Home Repair
  • Rent Assistance
  • Child Care
  • Food and Nutrition
  • Medical Bills Assistance
  • Utility Bills Assistance
  • Education Assistance

These grants may help you keep the roof over your head in times of financial crisis and get through the day without worrying so much if you can still take care of yourself and your family tomorrow. They also make education and healthcare more affordable for you, and if these are something you need the assistance of, you may click this link to register. 

List of Housing Grants Options for Minorities

Minorities are also granted with housing-related bills, which are applicable to both renters and homeowners. Here is a list of housing grant options:

  • 1st Time Home Buyer
  • Mobile Homes / Parks
  • Rental Housing Projects
  • Commercial Property
  • Apartment Buildings
  • Land Development
  • RV Parks
  • New Construction

Whether you plan to buy a house, find ways to cope with your rental lapses, or acquire new properties for real-estate ventures, you may click this link and register for the grant that suits your need. 

List of Education Grants

Education should be a right, not a privilege, but sometimes, it becomes a luxurious opportunity when it’s priced beyond what people can afford for themselves. Fortunately, there is a list of educational grants that minorities may refer to if they need any of them:

  • Federal Pell Grants
  • Scholarships
  • Student Financial Aid
  • Training Grants
  • Tuition Assistance
  • Grants For Research
  • Stafford Loans
  • Grants for Universities

Educational grants can help you sustain the financial burdens of going to the universities that you chose to become a part of. Some of its types are allocated for research endeavors, while some are granted to help you pay your tuition and access training opportunities. If you are interested, you may click this link and register. 

What is MBDA program?

Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) under the U.S Department of commerce has organized various programs to cater to different needs. They established business centers from different states that minority business owners can approach for assistance which ranges from securing a capital to finding the perfect business experts who will become their asset towards achieving phenomenal growth and success in domestic and global markets. If you want to know the available MBDA program in your area, you may visit this link

What is Health Services Research on Minority Health Disparities?

The Federal government acknowledges the significance of the minority health as much as the non-minority health; hence, the National Institution of Health (HHS-NIH11) made this grant available to motivate the innovation of health services research to produce findings and solutions that can effectively lessen the health disparities, improving the minority health as a whole. The application for this grant will end on March 27, 2023. To know if your organization is eligible for this opportunity, you may visit this website

What is the Department of Defense Research and Education Program?

This cooperative agreement aims to achieve the following goals: (1) Encourage defense organizations and higher educational institutions to collaborate and produce significant researches; (2) Strengthen national defense by producing competitive and capable human resources, and (3) Increase the population of STEM graduates. The Department of the Army Materiel Command (DOD-AMC) grants this award to eligible applicants who would pursue the enhancement of education, research, development, evaluation, and testing for the betterment of the future of Science, Technology, and Defense. The deadline of this application is the 30th day of April 2024. 

What does Research to Improve Native American Health grant cover?

The health challenges that Native Americans face are induced by multifaceted stressors that may include distinct, historical, sociocultural, and environmental factors. Inevitably, the National Institutes of Health acknowledge the inadequacy of current efforts to mitigate this problem; hence, they offer this grant to ensure that more research endeavors are being conducted to improve the health of the minority. In line with this, this grant seeks to fund and to support the following goals of exploratory and developmental studies: (1) to present well-informed and sustainable interventions and research strategies to overcome identified barriers; (2) to assess short-term efficacy of interventions; (3) to conduct etiological research; and (4) to determine the feasibility, scalability, and acceptability of interventions. You may apply for this grant until the 7th day of September 2023. To check if your organization or institution is eligible for this grant, you may visit this website.

What does Social Epigenomics Research Focused on Minority Health and Health Disparities?

National Institutes of Health seeks to fund epigenomics researches whose goal is directed towards the investigation of the occurrence of negative and positive social experiences in various stages of life to know how they may affect the gene function which can contribute to existing health disparities among the minorities. If your institution or organization is eligible for this grant, you may apply until the 8th day of November 2022. 

What are ways to find the minority business grants locally?

Minority business grants are valuable sources of funding that you may find in your area. If you are unsure where to start when looking for them, one of the things that you can do is simply search it online. Registrations for different grants can be done online nowadays. The link for these is embedded in the articles that either tackle this subject or provide a list of available grants. These lists often include essential information such as eligibility, requirements, application deadline, and many more. If you want to apply for them physically, you may visit the local offices of the federal and state agencies that award such grants.

What are the Small-Business Grants for Minorities?

The first step of any endeavor is always the hardest. For small business, finding an adequate source of funding for your starting capital and other expenses can be a handful of work. Fortunately, this list connects you to available small-business grants that you may apply for:

  • Grants.gov – this is an online portal that compiles federal funding opportunities and grant programs from federal agencies that award them. If you are interested, you must ensure that your business has a DUNS Number from Dun & Bradstreet, secure a business registration at the System Award Management website, and create a Grants.gov account. 

  • The USDA Rural Business Development Grant Program –  this program seeks to motivate the growth of small business in rural areas that have less than 50 employees and a gross revenue that does not exceed $1,000,000. This assistance may be used for training and technical assistance, and development or acquisition of land. 

  • National Association for the Self-Employed – members of this association may be awarded up to $4,000 to fund their entrepreneurial ventures that will lead to the growth fo their business.It provides educational resources and grants for potential grantees.

  • FedEx Small Business Grant Contest –  The FedEx Small Business annual grant challenge gives rewards of up to $50,000 to 12 small enterprises. Any for-profit small business with less than 99 workers that has been in operation for at least six months may join the contest.

  • Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs – Contracts and grants are awarded through these two small business initiatives for early-stage small firms that are striving to market creative research and development.

  • Minority Business Development Agency – this agency helps small business owners find federal contracts, market opportunities, and financing resources that they can take advantage of for the growth of their business. For more information, they may contact an MBDA business center in their airea.

  • Nationality Minority Supplier Development Council – members of this organization  may have access to financing programs and business consultation services which its Business Consortium Fund provides to motivate progress in their business. 

  • SBA 8(a) Business Development Program – financial insecurity should not hinder one’s intention to pursue a business. This program caters to economically and/or disadvantaged small-business owners and offers them with opportunities such as management training, technical guidance, and business development assistance. To find out if you are eligible for this opportunity, you may check the qualifications and requirements here.

  • Operation Hope Small-Business Empowerment Program – if you don’t know where to start, this program will help you out. They organize a 12-week training program and workshops to increase your knowledge on business financing, and credit and money management so you can be more strategic with your entrepreneurial decisions. Along with these opportunities are financial aid options which you can allocate for your business ventures.

  • Fast Break for Small Business – this program allocates a fund worth $6,000,000 to provide financial assistance to small businesses as their offer them with LegalZoom services. It is administered by Accion Opportunity Fund, a non-profit organization that partners with LegalZoom, the NBA WBNA, and NBA G League to make this opportunity possible. 

What are the new 2022 minorities small business grants?

If you are waiting for a sign to start your own business, this is it! Aside from the mentioned business grants above, there are more opportunities that await for you in your locale. This list will walk you through the new small business grants which you can apply for your own venture:

  • Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grants – Merchant Maverick has allocated $100,000 award for the Americans of Asians and Pacific Island decent which will be distributed among 5,000 members.  American business owners in the food service industry who are a part of the AAPI community are eligible to apply for the $10,000 grant that this program offers. They are already accepting applications since January 3, 2022 and if you are interested, you may click this link and visit their website.

  • The National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grants – if you have a specific financial need that you need to address in your business, you should considering preparing a detailed explanation about it including a strategic plan to use the fund for growth-motivating projects so you can apply for this grant which is specifically allocated to help you with it. The National Association for the Self Employed (NASE) offers financial assistance worth up to $4,000 per applicant who is a member of their organization. Their annual membership fee costs $120 but you can opt for a monthly payment which starts at $11.95. They accept applications throughout the year.

  • FedEx Small Business Grant Contest – this program organizes an annual competition that awards any small business owners with cash incentives which amount may vary year-to-year. The details for the 2022 competition is yet to be announced but just to give you an idea of this opportunity, the awards for the 2021 competition includes a $50,000 grand prize, a $7,500 worth of FedEx Office print services, and other smaller prizes. This contest does not allow non-profits, resellers, franchises, and independent consultants to join; however, if you are a US-based small-business owner with less than 50 employees  and an annual sales revenue record that does not exceed $5,000,000, you should consider visiting their website and learn more about this opportunity.

  • National Black MBA Association Scale-Up Pitch Challenge – Joining the Scale-Up Pitch Challenge will open your doors to the world of investors and venture capitalists to potentially establish a connection with them. Black business-owners can win prizes ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 for their pitches. Top three finalists from the pitch may compete for NBMBAA Conference and Career Affair and win any of these awards: (1) People’s Choice Award which is $1,000; (2) second place which  is worth $10,000; and first place wich is worth $50,000. The submission dates for the 2022 competition is yet to be announced so stay tuned!

  • Sephora Accelerate – this program seeks to help minorities through organizing activities that will provide them with an opportunity to become a part of their store as they reserve 15% of their shelf-space for black-owned businesses.  Applicants who are lucky enough to participate in this program will get to enjoy fun-filled training activities for 6 months, including a hands-on boot camp, mentoring, and two all-expense-paid trips. They will also receive additional funding for their business which they can use for their growth. Entry requirements for this program includes an underrated early-stage beauty brand that is not yet known to the market and sample beauty and care products. If you are interested, send your application by Summer 2022 to join the competition in 2023.

  • Asian Women Giving Circle Grants – this grant is awarded to Asian American women-businesses that have advocated for progressive social and political change through visual arts, choreography, visual arts, and workshops. Winners of the grant contest held last 2021, received $5,000 to $12,500 worth of cash prize. This year, it is yet to be announced. Request for Proposals is usually released every January. If you are interested, you may visit this link. 

  • Coalition to Back Black Businesses Fund – different business organizations have worked together to help Black business owners recover from the economic disruption that the COVID-19 pandemic caused. Through the initiative of Shopify, American Express, Stanley Black & Decker, and the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, grants worth $5,000 to $25,000 will be distributed among minority business owners. Online sellers may also enjoy 120 days free on Shopify to start their e-commerce venture. If you are a black business owner with only 3-20 employees and a business found in economically vulnerable community, you must consider submitting your application by September 2022 for the 2022-2023 grant cycle.

  • SoGal Foundation Black Founder Startup Grant – this program is good news for Black women and black nonbinary entrepreneurs! The SoGal foundation is dedicated to helping them achieve business growth by awarding them with grants worth $5,000 to $10,000 and a lifetime access to the SoGal Foundation and SoGal Ventures teams. If you identify as one of the mentioned minorities and you are looking for potential investors to help you manifest your scalable business or idea, then you should register now because they are currently accepting grant applications for 2022. 

  • Rebuild the Block Grants – This program raises $1,000,000 to distribute among black business owners through grants. With the mission to “bridge black business owners within our communities with reputable resources to infiltrate generational wealth and capital in the black community,” they seek to help black-owned businesses who have been impacted with the COVID-19 economic disruption and have a terrible experience of being looted to regain incurred financial losses. The application for this grant only accepts 90 submissions per 3-month cycles.

  • First Nations Development Institute Grants –  Native american farmers and ranchers are in for a treat with this program that is dedicated to providing them with an opportunity to widen their horizon, to strengthen land management strategies, and to increase their business capacity. They award up to $7,500 to 30 beginners who are willing to become an apprentice for 2 years and 5 months. If you are based in North and South Dakota, in Wisconsin, in Arizona, in New Mexico, and in Minnesota, you may anticipate for their announcement for the application for 2022 and visit their website to learn more about this opportunity.

What are the Funding programs of the US Small Business Administration to the minority owned businesses?

US Small Business Administration has several funding programs for the minority-owned businesses. These programs are the following:

  • COVID-19 Relief Programs – these programs have COVID-19 relief options which are provided to businesses, nonprofits, and faith-based organizations.

What are the loan options does US SBA provide?

Unlike grants, loans are payable source fundings that small business owners may use for their entrepreneurial ventures. SBA ensures that lenders are protected with low-risk guidelines and have access to capital. These are the following loan options:

  • 7(a) loansguarantee portions of the total amount, limits fees, and cap interest rates.

  • 504 loans long-term, fixed-rate financing to buy or repair assets such as equipment, machinery, and real estate.

  • Microloansgrants up to $50,000 to help businesses start-up and grow.

How to certify as a minority-owned business?

Requirements and qualifications for the certification of a minority-owned business may vary depending on the location of your application; nonetheless, you should remember to secure a proof that the business is at least 51% owned by a minority who identifies as US citizen.

How do grants differ from scholarships?

Grants and scholarships differs in terms of the basis of qualification. Grants are provided to address financial needs, while scholarships are awarded to students who have remarkable academic merits. They are both non-payable. They are given as a gift rather than a loan.

What are the Types of College Minority Grants?

Minority students who would like to apply for college grants may choose from the following:

  • Grants for Minority Students
  • Grants for Cosmetology School
  • College Grants for Women
  • African-American Student Grants
  • Scholarship by State

These grants are made available to help you afford educational expenses without worrying about finding other fund resources to repay them. This opportunity is generally applicable to everyone, but some programs offer financial assistance that are dedicated to the minorities as they take cultural traditions into account. This gift is something you should consider taking advantage of so you can be a few steps closer to your dreams.

What are the Best Sources of Minority Grants? 

As the all-time adage goes, “Poverty is not a hindrance to success”, several state and federal government grant funds eagerly distribute need-based assistance to minorities and financially-struggling individuals. Here is a list of popular federal grants:

  • Pell Grant this grant is perennially available to students who have evident financial needs. Per academic year, students may receive up to $5,500, depending on their enrollment status and duration and the cost of attending the college of their choice. 

  • Academic Competitiveness Grantfreshmen and sophomore students are eligible for this grant. This program aims to encourage them to pursue STEM-related academic paths despite the difficulty of involved courses. 

  • National Smart GrantNSG is a counterpart of ACG which is granted to junior and senior students who are eligible for Pell grant. 

What are Non-government organizations providing college minority grants?

There are other sources of college minority grants that are not government-funded. These foundations seek to help minority students overcome financial barriers to achieve a better education experience. Below are examples of these foundations:

  • Minority Foundations – These well-known organizations cater to the educational needs of ethnic students by administering scholarship programs and grants for them.

  • Vocational Groups and Corporate Entities – These groups and corporations envision a more diversified human resource by helping ethnic minorities achieve advanced education and professional growth.

  • Ciri Foundation –  With the goal to advance cultural heritage and to provide vocational development, this foundation offers financial aids to college students, specifically to Cook Inlet natives and descendants as well as Alaska Native. 

  • American Geosciences Institute – Through their Minority Participation Program, minority students may access mentorship opportunities and receive small cash grants.

  • American Bar Association – Aspiring minority lawyers can apply for the financial assistance that this association offers.

  • Blackfeed Nation –  This program provides college grants for Native American junior and senior students. 

Conclusion

Small businesses have the potential to grow and expand in the business industry. Minorities who don’t have enough budget to start a small business may benefit from these small business grants. These can be used to build their infrastructures, purchase the necessary items for their products, transportation, electricity, and water bills, etc. Moreover, these grants may be their saving grace to have a better quality of life.

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