The spirit of support for small businesses in downtown Kalamazoo is ramping up thanks to a grant program that was offered up by the United Way. Many small businesses owners feeling the awful impact the covid pandemic was having on just their day-to-day operations of running a business needed some help and when small business Saturday arrived, that help was the deciding factor on whether to operate or shut down.

“Honestly, any support I think at this point is important for small businesses,” said Natalie Saucedo, Director of Individual Giving and Innovation for the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo United Way. - WMMT Channel 3

The city of Kalamazoo and the United Way of Kalamazoo and Battle Creek launched a grant program called: The Kalamazoo Small Business Health Protection Grant program. The grants from United Way are designed to help cover basic costs of keeping their businesses safe from the virus;

"They (small business owners) are having to make a lot of pivotal changes and doing business in ways they have never had to do before. That’s obviously accrued additional cost for them so, this grant is really important to reimburse some of the cost they have seen since the onset of COVID-19,” said Saucedo. - WMMT Channel 3

The grant money to help cover costs for masks, hand sanitizer and gloves are among things considered imperative when it comes to battling to survive the pandemic, and of course these weapons do not come cheap.

“At the end of the day as long as we are supporting small businesses owners in our community, we can feel a little bit better about it,” said Saucedo. - WMMT Channel 3

Find out if your business qualifies by applying on the United Way website.

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