Abbotsford business coalition awards $40,000 in COVID relief grants

Abbotsford business coalition awards $40,000 in COVID relief grants

Money from Small Business Emergency Fund goes to 20 recipients

The Abbotsford Business Community Coalition (ABCC) has awarded $40,000 in grants from its Small Business Emergency Fund.

The fund provides support to local independent businesses that are beginning the recovery from COVID-19.

“This makes a big difference for small businesses like mine,” said grant recipient Josh Reynolds of Illustrate Collective. “The money helps, but it’s also reassuring just to be reminded that the business community has our back.”

The Small Business Emergency was created through financial contributions from ABCC members the Abbotsford Downtown Business Association, Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, Abbotsford Tech District, University of the Fraser Valley, and Community Futures South Fraser.

RELATED: Abbotsford business group forms to help those struggling with COVID-19 issues

The fund offers non-repayable grants to support immediate business operation needs as COVID-19 physical distancing measures are lifted and during economic recovery.

A recent donation of $5,000 from Community Futures South Fraser increased the funding available for the current pool of applicants that applied in June, allowing more grants to be disbursed.

More than 100 grant applications were received, of which 20 were selected after a careful review and assessment process. Applications that were not granted this round will be considered based on further fundraising success by ABCC.

ABCC continues to champion Support Local BC, an initiative created to help local, independent businesses with cashflow during the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery by selling gift certificates for future use.

Its #WhatLocalsDo advertising and social media campaign, and video featuring local comedians Cliff Prang and Sunee Dhaliwal launched on May 22.

RELATED: Relief grants up to $2,500 now available for Abbotsford businesses