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Resources for Your Business During COVID-19

Local communities and small businesses have been impacted by spread of COVID-19. As a nonprofit that supports small businesses, Accion wants to provide you with helpful information and resources as the safety and health of our staff, clients and community is the highest priority.

NOTE: This list is being updated as new resources become available.  Last updated: July 7, 2020, 6:30pm.

Accion Local Office – Accion Serving Southern California

Accion staff team will continue services to support small businesses and are doing so virtually. All contact information and number remain the same.

Accion Contacts

Reopening Resources

  • For employers seeking to reopen safely and successfully: Check out the new Business Reopening Digital Resources Center from the US Chamber of Commerce, including state-specific and sector-specific guidance, here: https://uschamber.com/reopen
  • California Reopening Resources:  Information from the state to reopen your business safely and state guideline details. https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap/#top
  • SBA Low Interest Lows re Recent Civil Unrest Events for San Diego County: "The linked form is for businesses to document damages sustained during the recent civil unrest event(s). This form will be utilized by Local, State and Federal governments in order to request a Physical Disaster Declaration from the United States Small Business Administration (SBA). If a Physical Disaster Declaration is granted by the SBA, impacted businesses will be able to apply for a low-interest loan from the SBA. Please submit completed forms to recoverysandiego at sdcounty.ca.gov. Any questions regarding this process can also be sent to the recoverysandiego at sdcounty.ca.gov email address.
  • Salesforce Guide to Reopening: step-by-step playbook for reopening your business, safely.
  • Shop Safe, Shop Local: The Governor’s Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery announced a new campaign, Calling All Californians: #ShopSafeShopLocal, to encourage Californians to support small businesses in their communities as they make modifications to protect public health and help our state’s diverse neighborhoods thrive. Running through July, the campaign is a call to action to help all California small businesses operate safely amid the COVID-19 pandemic and grow their digital footprints. As part of this campaign, the State of California has partnered with industry-leading companies, such as Nextdoor, Google, and UPS, and launched a website that connects California’s small business owners to critical tools and resources

Local Electric Companies

SDG&E and SoCal Edison is temporarily suspending service disconnections and waiving late payment fees for business customers whose finances have been hit hard by the coronavirus.

County Resources in Our Service Area

These counties in our service area have pages dedicated to COVID-19 and have the latest governmental updates:

  • San Diego
    • Through the San Diego County COVID-19 Small Business & Nonprofit Loan Program, Accion is now offering small business loans at 1% interest from $5,500 to $50,000 to existing businesses located in unincorporated areas of San Diego County with fewer than 50 employees. If you are a nonprofit interested in loan information, visit SanDiegoSBNLP.org.
    • Small Business Stimulus Program: For-profit and nonprofit businesses can apply for grant money if they can show losses and costs are a direct result of the pandemic. Businesses are urged to apply early. Applications are available now through Oct. 16 – subject to available funding.

      To qualify businesses must have:

      • 100 or fewer employees
      • Headquarters in San Diego County
      • A minimum 1-year operating history as of Feb. 14, 2020
      • Documentation of financial hardship because of COVID-19

Recursos para pequeñas empresas en español:

City Resources

Local Business Resources For Counseling/Advice   

Free one-on-one business counseling on general business topics is available by phone or video through our partners

Our Accion team can also help to coordinate an appointment on your behalf. Please email Etla Moreno (emoreno@accionsandiego.org) for more information.

SBDC California has put together a Small Business Survival Guide to help navigate the options for California small business owners.

INC has compiled an extensive list of free tools, resources, and financial help for business owners hit by Covid-19.

Chairmen’s RoundTable is a group of highly accomplished executives who devote their time to helping select San Diego companies navigate their business challenges. Chairmen’s Roundtable is tackling the crisis by working with businesses on crisis management/turnaround, business pivoting to new ways of doing similar work and business transformation, which is making new products.

Organizations with Grants/Loans for Small Businesses

  • Payroll Protection Program (PPP) - The Paycheck Protection Program provides small businesses with funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.
  • Facebook: $100 million grant program (Disponible también en español) 
  • SBA Emergency Funds – Disaster Loans Program
  • KIVA Crowd Lending
  • South County EDC: one-time $5,000 no-interest loan with repayment due on April 1, 2021.
    • For eating establishments located in South San Diego County
  • CDC Small Business Finance - Top Tips For Businesses Impacted by COVID-19 guide (being updated)
  • Verizon GIVES $2.5 Million to LISC for Small Business and Nonprofits - First round of apps closes on April 4 at midnight. Preference will be given to entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and business in undeserved communities
  • Save Small Business Fund - U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation – in partnership with Vistaprint and a coalition of supporting companies, foundations, and philanthropic donors – is working to provide financial relief through the Save Small Business Fund. The Fund is providing $5,000 in short-term relief to employers across the United States, including chambers of commerce. These one-time supplemental cash grants are for businesses that have between three and 20 employees and operate in an economically vulnerable community (bottom 80% of zip codes in the country).
  • Salesforce Care for Small Business - As part of their commitment to supporting small businesses, they have created Salesforce Care Small Business Grants. These $10,000 grants will provide capital to help U.S. small businesses weather this crisis. International small business support will be announced soon.
  • The Red Backpack Fund -The Spanx by Sara Blakely Foundation donated $5 million to support female entrepreneurs in the wake of COVID-19 and teamed up with GlobalGiving to establish The Red Backpack Fund. GlobalGiving will be overseeing the fund, making 1,000 grants of $5,000 each to female entrepreneurs in the U.S. to help alleviate the immediate needs and support the long-term recovery of those impacted by this crisis.
  • The 'Believe in Beer' Relief Fund directly supports breweries and state guilds impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The fund will be made available to breweries and guilds who require immediate financial assistance. ​Breweries and Guilds that require immediate assistance are encouraged to apply. Applications open Friday, April 24th and will close Sunday, May 17th. Please read through the application criteria and guidelines carefully before applying for the relief fund grant. If you have any questions about your eligibility or the application process, please contact us at grant@thebottleshare.org.
  • Smart Relief Loan Program: Cathay Bank has launched the Smart Relief Loan Program to help small business owners affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which offers low interest rate short-term business loans ranging from $5,000 to $10,000. Learn about Smart Relief Loan eligibility.
  • City Heights Business Relief Fund - In an effort to help these locally owned businesses survive the current crisis and sustain their operations for the long-term, LISC San Diego has joined with members of the City Heights Economic Development Collaborative to launch the City Heights Business Relief Fund.
  • LISC and Lowe’s Team Up on Small Business Grants - Lowe’s Companies has joined forces with LISC to provide COVID-19 relief grants to minority- and women-owned businesses in historically underserved communities. All applications must be submitted by Wednesday, June 17th at 11:59 PM ET. Learn more at www.lisc.org/lowes.
  • Qualcomm launches Small Business Accelerator Program - Qualcomm Technologies Inc. unveiled the Qualcomm Small Business Accelerator Program, designed to help small businesses convert to a mobile-first work environment necessary to thrive in today's business climate. Approximately 25 small businesses will be selected and each will receive a selection of products and technical support valued at up to $25,000. To apply for the Qualcomm Small Business Accelerator Program and view its T&Cs, applications should be submitted here.
  • Black Business Relief Grant for San Diego - The Central San Diego Black Chamber of Commerce announced a new relief fund for Black owned business meant to keep them afloat during the pandemic. Applications open Wednesday, June 17, and priority will be given to small disadvantaged businesses in low income neighborhoods. Read more here: https://sdblackchamber.org/
  • La Mesa Disaster Recovery Fund: The La Mesa Disaster Recovery Fund was created by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Foundation to help businesses damaged or destroyed in the aftermath of opportunistic violence and looting following peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstrations in La Mesa.
  • Visa IFundWomen Grant Program for Black women-owned businesses - Visa has extended its partnership with IFundWomen to support Black women-owned small businesses in the United States through a new grant program and educational resources. These grants provide an opportunity for recipients to grow their businesses and continue to offer much needed services to their local (and global) communities. Applications are being accepted from June 30, 2020 through July 31, 2020.

Legal Support

For Workers and Employers

Taxes

Business Resources: California  

Resources to Help Businesses Maintain Their Operations

  • The California Office of the Small Business Advocate is available to help businesses identify resources and obtain answers to key questions (to the extent known). (Disponible también en español) 
  • CAMEO’s Resources for Small Business - extensive list of resources (statewide and local) for small businesses
  • The Small Business Administration
  • San Diego Regional EDC: extensive list of resources for city of San Diego businesses.
  • North County EDC - San Diego - resource list for people located in Northern San Diego County
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance - As part of the federal CARES Act, the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program helps unemployed Californians who are business owners, self-employed, independent contractors, have limited work history, and others not usually eligible for regular state UI benefits who are out of business or services are significantly reduced as a direct result of the pandemic. The provisions of the program include:
    • Up to 39 weeks of benefits starting with weeks of unemployment beginning February 2, 2020, through the week ending December 26, 2020, depending on when you became directly impacted by the pandemic.
    • A new 13-week federal extension for those who run out of their regular state-provided UI benefits (maximum 26 weeks). File a PUA claim and you may be converted to the federal extension once it is available.

Federal and State Government Resources