Mayor Gloria Launches $12M in Small Biz COVID Relief Grants


Huruma Clothing Co. is one of the small businesses that will benefit from local grants. Photo Source: Huruma Clothing Co.

Small business and nonprofits to benefit

Voice & Viewpoint Newswire

To help small business and nonprofits, Mayor Todd Gloria launched a grant program on August 9, 2021, with The San Diego Foundation to provide $12 million to small businesses and nonprofits hardest hit by the pandemic.

“San Diego BIPOC Business Owners Matter. They are a part of the economic engine of San Diego,” said Donna DeBerry, President and CEO of the Central San Diego Black Chamber of Commerce. “The City of San Diego cannot allow the pandemic to dilute the vision and the progress of underserved businesses and communities. Providing equitable resources to these businesses not only supports their dreams and aspirations, but it also refuels and rebuilds the City of San Diego.”

“For many of our family-owned businesses and community-based organizations, these grants are a much-needed opportunity to get back on track and rebuild their livelihoods,” Mayor Gloria said. His “Back to Work SD” budget allocated a total of $14.2 million in one-time funding for programs to get San Diegans back to work through a variety of initiatives, including $10 million in financial assistance to small business and nonprofits hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and in historically underinvested communities.

“San Diego’s small businesses and nonprofits are a critical part of the fabric of our community,” Councilmember Sean Elo-Rivera said. “The COVID Relief Grant Program isn’t just meant to be a lifeline to those struggling to make it. It is an investment by our City in the hardworking people who make San Diego what we are. Even better, by focusing on historically underinvested in communities, we are working to provide opportunity to those who have been left out of less thoughtful relief efforts. So, if you’re a business owner who has been struggling, please apply. San Diego is investing in your success.”

The San Diego Foundation provided an additional $2 million to support local nonprofit organizations and increased the total program funding to $12 million. Applications for this funding will be open between Aug. 11 and Sept. 24, with grants awarded by the San Diego Foundation shortly thereafter.

Small businesses located in, and nonprofits serving residents of, the City of San Diego can view eligibility requirements and apply at

“As a small business owner, I know firsthand how COVID relief grants like this can greatly impact small and family-owned businesses in our pandemic recovery,” said Prince Shamamba, Owner of Huruma Clothing. “The process of accessing relief assistance can be made much easier by partner organizations like SBDC. These grants can also help us get more local youth involved in our business operations, from selling processes to specialized training.”

The application process is not first come first serve. Grant decisions will be made after the initial window for applications closes. Free application assistance is available through the San Diego & Imperial Small Business Development Center and other partners. The International Rescue Committee is providing significant assistance and outreach to critical populations in multiple languages as well.

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