WESST Receives $200,000 SBA Women’s Business Center Resiliency and Recovery Demonstration Grant

By Katie Knipe | August 23, 2021

The U.S. Small Business Administration issued 14 grant awards of up to $200,000 each to organizations in 13 states as part of the Women’s Business Centers (WBC) Resiliency and Recovery Demonstration Grant under the SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership (OWBO). The purpose of the grants is to establish or continue innovative projects that aim to improve service delivery, training, and support provided to women-owned businesses impacted by COVID-19.

“With this funding, we will support WBCs that have established innovative programming to increase outreach to aspiring and active women entrepreneurs nationwide. We are proud to support organizations who have deep connections to small, diverse, and rural communities across the country and who understand their unique needs,” said Natalie Madeira Cofield, Assistant Administrator for SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership.

With support from this Recovery and Resiliency Demonstration Grant, WESST will expand The Money Learning Lab™ to serve entrepreneurs across the state of New Mexico.  The Money Learning Lab™ is an innovative mobile resource designed to assist diverse entrepreneurs in addressing their businesses’ financial challenges.  Services are delivered by staff and contract experts with bookkeeping, accounting, credit, cashflow, budgeting, and banking experience.

Through training, consultations and mentoring, the overall goal of the Money Learning Lab™ is to deepen understanding about the flow of money into and out of a business and increase knowledge about financial systems that will help owners better manage their business financials.

The project’s target population of women and people of color were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and have sought support and guidance through the Money Learning Lab™ so they can successfully navigate this uncertain business climate. This Recovery and Resiliency grant will enable WESST to expand the Money Learning Lab™ so our WBC network can offer the program in communities across New Mexico, which is critical given the state’s high concentration of small and micro-businesses and one of the highest poverty rates in the country even before COVID-19.

“We are grateful to be the recipient of this grant as it will allow us to increase outreach to women entrepreneurs in diverse communities across New Mexico. WESST will provide counseling and technical and financial skill development to women interested in starting, growing, or pivoting a small business through our innovative Money Learning Lab program.   This grant enables us to continue supporting the economic recovery of women-owned small businesses impacted by COVID,” said Margarita Guarin, WESST Albuquerque Regional Manager.

To read the full press release, please click here.

About the Author

Katie Knipe

Katie Knipe

Katie Knipe is the VP of Development for WESST and has worked in nonprofit management and arts administration for the past decade. She has dedicated her career to fundraising for organizations whose missions fuel her fire, including those who promote classical music performance and who serve people experiencing homelessness.

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