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Recovery | For Businesses

The Bridge Fund

Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development launched the Bridge Fund, a $100 million investment in businesses and workers grappling with the COVID-19 public health emergency in the hospitality, entertainment, and retail sectors. Through the Bridge Fund, the District will strategically invest to sustain the hospitality, entertainment, and retail industries to help mitigate the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on workers and businesses.

Streatery Winter Ready Grant Program

The Mayor's Office of Nightlife and Culture is providing a one-time grant to restaurants that currently offer outdoor dining in the District. Streatery Winter Ready Grant Program funds may be used for outdoor dining winterization purposes and to maintain outdoor dining operations.

Small Business Resiliency Fund

Before You Open Guidance

Miss Our Weekly Economic Recovery Team Weekly Check-In?

You can now download the presentations and listen to the events via Podcast:

District Economic Recovery Team

The District’s Economic Recovery Team (DERT) is working proactively to plan and coordinate how we will restart business activity, support our workforce, and ensure that all of our residents can continue to call Washington D.C. home. We are all in this together – and we will work collaboratively to get through it together. To that end, we invite the input of all stakeholders as we consider new programs and strategies to implement over the short-, intermediate- and long-term to support the recovery of DC’s economy. Provide your input here.

DC East of the River Small Business Economic Relief Microgrant Program for Wards 7 and 8

Application period closed May 29, 2020.

DC Small Business Recovery Microgrants

Application period closed April 1, 2020.

DC Small Business Microgrants Program Summary Report, June 1, 2020

US Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Assistance for Small Businesses

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)
This program provides working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to help qualified small businesses and private nonprofit organizations overcome the temporary loss of revenue as a result of the COVID-19 virus outbreak. Learn more and apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan.

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
This program provides forgivable loans to small businesses and nonprofit organizations to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. Learn more and apply for the Paycheck Protection Program.

Download a checklist to prepare to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program

  • As of April 3, 2020, small businesses and sole proprietorships can apply

  • Starting April 10, 2020, independent contractors and self-employed individuals can apply

Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance
Loan advance of up to $10,000 to provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. Small businesses, nonprofits, and independent contractors are all eligible to apply. Funds will be made available following a successful application. This loan advance will not have to be repaid. Learn more & apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance.

SBA Loan Program Resources for Artists and Arts Organizations

View All SBA Coronavirus Relief Options

Additional Resources for Small Businesses & Non-Profits

LISC-Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and Verizon are teaming up to provide grants of up to $10,000 to businesses affected by COVID-19—especially entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises in historically underserved communities who don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital. The fifth round of applications opens July 27 and runs through Aug. 3. Click here for more information.

Greater Washington Community Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund
The Community Foundation established the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund to support local nonprofits leading emergency preparedness and response efforts to help mitigate the impact on disproportionately affected communities in our region. Through this fund, we are focused on addressing lost wages, providing relief for small businesses and gig economy workers, expanding access to medical services, and meeting the unique needs of people experiencing homelessness, among other needs. Learn more about the emergency response fund.

National Restaurant Association Restaurant Employee Relief Fund
The National Restaurant Association Restaurant Employee Relief Fund was created to help restaurant industry employees experiencing extraordinary hardship in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Through this fund, grants will be made to restaurant industry employees who have been impacted by COVID-19, including a decrease in wages or loss of employment. More information: https://rerf.us/.

Facebook Small Business Grant Program
Facebook announced a $100 million grant for small businesses impacted by COVID-19 and launched the Business Resource Hub, which features recommendations to help small businesses stay connected to customers and stay on track. More information: https://www.facebook.com/business/boost/grants.

Applying for FEMA Public Assistance (PA) – Private Nonprofit Organizations:

Public Assistance (PA) is FEMA’s largest grant program supporting communities responding to and recovering from major disasters or emergencies. PA funds support recovery from major disasters by providing grant assistance for debris removal, life-saving emergency protective measures, and the restoration of public infrastructure. Eligible applicants include local governments, states, tribes, territories and certain private nonprofit organizations.

Unlike other grants that fund proposed projects, Public Assistance is a 75/25 cost share reimbursement process and requires supporting documentation, such as invoices and receipts. PA is not meant to recover lost revenue.

For the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the District of Columbia has been approved for Public Assistance Category B – Emergency Protective Measures funding. The following categories are examples of what may be considered eligible:

  • Management, control and reduction of immediate threats to public health and safety;

  • Emergency medical care;

  • Medical sheltering;

  • Household pet sheltering and containment actions, in accordance with CDC guidelines;

  • Purchase and distribution of food, water, ice, medicine, and other consumable supplies, to include personal protective equipment and hazardous material suits and movement of supplies and persons;

  • Security and law enforcement;

  • Communication strategies to provide general health and safety information to the public;

  • Search and rescue efforts to locate and recover members of the public.

Prior to signing up for Public Assistance, please contact DC Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency for additional guidance. The Public Assistance Program Manager for DC is Russell Gardner ([email protected]).  

FEMA must screen and approve Private Non-Profit (PNP) organizations to participate in the Public Assistance program. For specifics, please visit: https://www.fema.gov/news-release/2020/04/02/coronavirus-covid19-pandemic-private-nonprofit-organizations

For additional information, please visit:

Resources for the Arts and Creative Community

  • Americans for the Arts is providing up-to-date COVID-19 news and resources for the arts and culture field. 

  • The American Alliance of Museums has compiled a guide to help museums prepare internally and externally for outbreaks in their communities.

  • ArtsReady, an online emergency preparedness service by and for arts/cultural nonprofits, is adding updates daily.

  • The Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP) has pulled together resources to help you and your team prepare for and respond to the potential impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

  • Billboard has a state-by-state listing of resources for professional musicians.

  • This COVID-19 & Freelance Artists list contains general resources, advocacy links, and a growing list of funding opportunities.

  • Creative Capital has a comprehensive list for artists working in all disciplines, organizations trying to steady the boat, and anyone working to create the new normal.

  • DC’s Capital Bop has posted a list of resources for DC jazz artists and audiences.

  • The DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the University of Maryland is offering pro bono consultations to any US-based non-profit arts or culture organization, between March and June 2020, as a response to the mounting effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

  • The Joan Mitchell Foundation has posted a COVID-19 Emergency Resources for Visual Artists listing that breaks opportunities out by regions, as well as nationally.

  • NAPAMA (North American Performing Arts Managers and Agents) has posted a list of resources, including information related to airfare refund and/or cancellation policies, emergency fund and relief programs, sample communications, and more.