For over 18 years, United Way of Southeast Louisiana has offered match funds to help entrepreneurs multiply their savings. In an effort to decrease the racial wealth gap and address the many barriers that small Black-owned businesses have historically faced, UWSELA is excited to launch the Thriving African-American Small Business Initiative.
The program requires business owners to save $334 monthly over 6 months until $2,000 is saved. The $2,000 in savings is then matched with $10,000 in grant money for a combined total of $12,000 for their business.
Participants engage in seven months of concentrated instruction designed to help them fine-tune their budgeting skills and improve their profits and viability. Workshops are held monthly at our J. Wayne Leonard and Northshore Prosperity Centers and participants meet regularly with coaches to help grow their business acumen.
To be eligible for the program, business owners must meet the following requirements:
- Business must be at least 51% African-American owned.
- Operate within UWSELA’s service area of Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, or Washington parishes.
- In business for three years or more.
- Annual revenue of $200,000 or less.
- For-profit microenterprise with five or fewer employees. (Note: The number of employees includes owner(s) and both part-time and full-time employees.)
- Member of one of the local chambers of commerce or must become a chamber member within the first 45 days of enrollment.
The following types of businesses are NOT eligible for the program:
- Adult entertainment
- Liquor stores
- Tobacco/VAPE stores
- Passive real estate investments
- Non-profit organizations
- Franchise businesses
- Gig workers (Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Instacart drivers, etc.)
2023 PROGRAM TIMELINE
|04/03||9:00 a.m.||Application Period Opens|
|04/17||11:59 p.m.||DEADLINE TO APPLY|
Cohort Announcement Event
2023 PARTICIPATING BUSINESSES
- Afri Modiste
- Braids By Denise LLC Hair Stylist
- Christiel Holistic Healing Center
- Danny’s Creole Kitchen, LLC
- Domango Training
- His Grace Enterprises LLC DBA: Popcorn Island
- New Day Properties, LLC Real Estate
- Paparazzi Cam Photo Booth & Photography
- Perfectly Vinyl Prints D&B, LLC
- Socialite Events
- Socialstep Marketing and Consulting
- Therapist With Talent Massage
- Touches by Tircuit
For questions about this program, please contact Betty Brown at 504-827-6828 or TAASB@UnitedWaySELA.org.