BRIDGING FINANCIAL GAPS FOR WOMEN
Michigan Tribe micro-grants are designed for small businesses owned by those who identify as she/her. Funds are intended to give women the financial support they need to start, maintain, and grow a business in Jackson County, Michigan, especially those who do not have access to resources like traditional loan opportunities or financial support from friends and family.
Some examples of businesses eligible for Michigan Tribe micro-grants include, but are not limited to, in-home bakers ready to expand to a food truck, traveling or e-commerce boutiques ready to open a brick and mortar, artistic entrepreneurs expanding their medium into a full time gig, or those who need support to recover or pivot through the COVID-19 crisis (and others who meet eligibility requirements).
MELANATED VOICES MICRO-GRANT
To be eligible to apply for this micro-grant, your business must be at least 51% directly and unconditionally owned and controlled by a woman who is in one or more of the following minority groups (or any combination of the following): Black/brown or African American, Native American, Asian/Asian-Pacific or Asian-Indian American, Arabic/Middle Eastern, Hispanic American (and meet other eligibility requirements).
WOMEN RISE MICRO-GRANT
To be eligible to apply for this micro-grant, your business must be at least 51% directly and unconditionally owned and controlled by someone who identifies as she/her (and meet other eligibility requirements).
*Minority women can apply for both the Women RISE micro-grant and the Melanated Voices micro-grant. To be considered for both, make sure to indicate that in your application.
To be eligible to apply for a micro-grant through the Melanated Voices Fund or Women RISE Fund, you must meet the following criteria:
Business must be at least 51% woman owned
Business must physically be in Jackson County, Michigan (sole proprietors are eligible)
Business must have 25 or less employees
Business has to prove a need for financial support to start, maintain, or grow their business
If applying for a micro-grant through the Melanated Voices Fund, business must be at least 51% owned by a woman of color
*Franchises and multilevel marketing business are not eligible to apply.
Micro-grant funds can be used for expenses such as inventory or supplies; rent, mortgage, or utilities; payroll; advertising or marketing; upgrades, equipment, software, or machining; childcare related to business needs; or other operating expenses not listed.
Ineligible expenses include debts, non-business related mortgage, rent, or utilities; groceries; personal expenses; or childcare not necessary to maintain, grow, or start your business.
Q: How quickly will businesses receive grant money?
A: Winners will be announced the week of October 4, 2021 and checks will be mailed by October 29, 2021.
Q: How much money will businesses receive?
A: Winners can receive up to $2,000 in micro-grant funds. Not all grants will total $2,000 (some may be less).
Q: How many grants will be given away?
A: There are limited funds available (up to $10k total), so only a handful of those who apply will receive funding.
Q: Who selects the winners?
A: A panel of minority women business owners, plus representatives from Michigan Tribe, will review applications and select the winner/s.
Q: Can I donate to the micro-grant fund/s?
A: Um, yes (hugs)! Donations can be made to expand our giving power HERE.
Sisterhood of Strong
"The Melanated Voices Grant funding allowed me to contract with a Facebook Ad and Funnel building expert and to build the foundation for my Virtual Studio Membership Site. These kinds of projects are surprisingly expensive and require a front end investment, the grant funding made that possible for me. "
"Planting our own local field has been something we've wanted to do for a while now, but we weren't sure how we were going to budget buying ingredients and supplies for products, but pay for the new plants as well. With our original farm being in the UP this grant has been such a blessing because the lavender will be in our own backyard!"
Belle Row Boutique
"Though sales for Belle Row practically paused due to multiple covid shutdowns, the expenses to run my business never stopped. The cost of inventory to stock the boutique and shipping and receiving fees remained. Clothing that I had paid for in advance arrived weeks late—if they arrived at all...
As an entrepreneur and small business owner who received ZERO financial assistance from the local, state, or federal government, I cannot express how critical it was to receive this grant money from Michigan Tribe. It was a life vessel to stay afloat, and I am beyond grateful Belle Row was selected as a recipient."
Shortie's Sweets Eats & Treats
"The funds from this grant gave me the opportunity to enhance my business and the marketing side of the business. It opened up doors for me when I was not sure how I would be able to make those purchases I needed, winning this grant, that gave me a lot of hope. Marketing and equipment are very important tools in any business and with these funds I was able to 'upgrade.' "