Dec. 3, 2019 By Kristen Torres
Sunnyside Shines, a local business improvement district, has announced the launch of a new micro grant program designed to help neighborhood businesses.
The program will provide $10,000 in small grants that will be split among eligible store owners to cover certain expenses, such as storefront improvements and marketing tools, according to the organization.
Each grant will total $1,250. One award will also be given to a neighborhood entrepreneur who doesn’t currently have a storefront, but has contributed to the neighborhood’s commercial life.
Businesses throughout Sunnyside are eligible to apply, not simply through those within the BID corridor. The BID district covers sections of Queens Boulevard, Greenpoint Avenue and some adjacent streets.
Sunnyside Shines was created in 2007 to help spark economic growth in the community. The new MicroGrant program is designed to help small businesses “cover expenses that will help them remain competitive and relevant,” according to a statement by the organization.
Businesses will also have the opportunity to apply for interest-free business loans of up to $10,000 through Sunnyside Shines’ partnership with the Kiva crowdfunding platform.
The grant program is funded by a discretionary grant allocated by Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer.
“Small businesses are woven into the fiber of our Queens community, and it is important we do our part to enhance opportunities for our residents,” Van Bramer said. “I am enthusiastic about seeing new entrepreneurs succeed through the efforts of Sunnyside Shines.”
Applications for the micro grant program can be found on the Sunnyside Shines website at www.sunnysideshines.org/news/microgrants and will be accepted until Jan. 15, 2020.
The organization will announce the awardees by February 29, 2020.