Find how and where to get free business grants or loans in Kansas below. The agencies listed have allocated funds to help women, veteran as well as minority (or other disadvantaged businesses) get the financial assistance they need. Whether a woman owned business (or startup), a veteran company, or Black, Latino, LGBTQ, or Asian company, assistance is offered below.
Both low interest rate (or forgivable loans) are offered in Kansas as well as free grants. The funds may come from the state or federal government. Or there are corporations that help women, minorities, and veterans. Non-profits, local cities administrations near you, and charities also try to provide both (1) funds as well as free advice (such as mentoring services) to business owners as well as entrepreneurs in Kansas too.
The loans as well as free grant programs often go quickly. It is recommended to always apply ASAP for financial aid for MWBE businesses, veterans or Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC). While any small to mid-sized business in Kansas can apply for assistance, each of the programs, companies or agencies listed has committed to helping disadvantaged as well as struggling businesses. This means Black owned companies, veteran or women businesses, immigrants, Latinos, and other minorities will always have funds allocated to their needs.
Find small business loans and free grants in Kansas
Below is a list of grants and loans that is updated daily with the new programs. While most the funds go to startups or small businesses in the major cities of Wichita, Olathe, or Kansas City, there are resources offered in all counties, cities, and towns. Every program will be allocating some funding or other resources to women as well as minority owned businesses.
Ongoing and year round financial assistance and business coaching in Kansas
Create Campaign helps minority owned business in Wichita and Kansas City. They help with microloans, free legal clinics, helps with filing LLC, business planning and more. All states for starting a minority owned business to running it are covered. Get details here. https://www.createcampaignks.com/
Office of Minority and Women Business Development has a wide range of assistance programs for disadvantaged, minority-and women-owned businesses, including veteran owned. There is certification, referrals to free grants, help with financing and bidding on government contracts and more. There are also free business development workshops and services. Learn more here. https://www.kansascommerce.gov/program/business-incentives-and-services/mw-development/
GrowKS provides grant money, interest free loans, small business development, and other assistance programs to disadvantaged businesses as well those in lower-income communities. The Kansas Department of Commerce, NetWork Kansas, and federal government are partnering on this. Programs include the GROWKS Loan Program as well as Equity Programs, which used private funds. Learn more here. https://www.growks.com/
NetWork Kansas supports SMB and entrepreneurs in the state. The goal is to help the state grow, diversify, and invest in small companies, start-ups, IT businesses, health care and more. There are Capital Loan programs (matching funds), help for BIPOC companies, technical assistance and many other resources from the non-profit. Read more here. https://www.networkkansas.com/
The Omni Circle Group in Topeka focuses on minority businesses, in particular those owned by people of color. A resource center will help MWBE businesses learn about, and find government grants as well as get assistance in applying to them. From time to time micro-loans may be issued directly by the Omni Circle Group. The center also has workshops, classes, co-working spaces and other support. Learn more. https://www.omnicirclegroup.org/
City of Salinas Economic Development Division has various free grant and forgivable loan programs for local businesses. They include Marketing and Technology Micro Grant, restaurant loan programs, and other support. The goal is to help small businesses, including MWBE, get the funds they need. Apply here. https://www.cityofsalinas.org/Your-Government/Find-a-Department/Community-Development/Economic-Development/Business-Retention-Expansion
Wichita businesses in lower income parts of the city as well as MWBE businesses can apply for funds from Providing Resources & Opportunities for Proprietors, Entrepreneurs & Lenders. A combination of interest free loans (though very limited) as well as low cost loans (of as low as 3% APR) may be issued. The goal is to ensure socially focused or economically-disadvantaged businesses can access to affordable capital. The company must also be operating for at least two years. Learn more. https://www.wichita.gov/Economic/Propel/Program%20Description.pdf
The Entrepreneurial Resource and Training Center offers a number of resources. There are workspaces for rent, networking events, as well as information on – a database of free government grants or loans for MWBE businesses. The center is part of the Black Mastermind Group, which operates nationally as well as in Kansas City KS. Learn more. https://theblackmastermindgroup.com/ertckck/
December 2023 and January 2024
Manhattan KS businesses can get funds from the Elevate Micro-Loan Program. The money is offered by Black Entrepreneurs of the Flint Hills, Spark, Greater Manhattan Community Foundation and other groups. A focus is on disadvantaged businesses including owners of color. Apply here. https://sparkmhk.com/funding
January and February 2023
Overland Park is providing additional grant money to small businesses using American Rescue Act Funds. There are funds for hotels, small businesses, travel companies and the like. Some of the grant money will be allocated to women, minorities, and veteran owned businesses in Overland Park. The non-profit Community Capital Fund is also disbursing funds. Get details here. https://www.ccfkansascity.org/opks-arpa
Wichita City businesses, with a focus on minority and/or women owned, can get low cost or interest free loans from the PROPEL program. The formal name is the Providing Resources & Opportunities for Proprietors, Entrepreneurs & Lenders. The city is providing up to $20,000 to qualified businesses as part of the PROPEL Small Business Loan Fund. Apply for a loan or learn more here. https://www.wichita.gov/Economic/Pages/propel.aspx
June and July 2022
Overland Park has three different grant programs for small to mid sized businesses. All of them are the result of federal government American Rescue Plan Funds. They are mostly focused around businesses impacted by the COVID pandemic and the financial aid can help them recover. Priority of the free grants is for Black women owned businesses, minorities, women and veterans. The 3 programs include The Small Business Rescue Fund, financial help as part of the Hotel Fund as well as the Impacted Industries Fund. The Community Capital Fund is processing applications, and learn more here. https://www.ccfkansascity.org/opks-arpa
Shawnee Economic Recovery Grant program is providing up to $5,000 to qualified businesses. The money is focused on facility costs, such as rent, mortgage, or utility payments. In addition, some of the money is reserved for MWBE small businesses. The funds are for small businesses in the city and also to help businesses recover from the COVID pandemic. In addition there are several other qualifications, and find details/apply here. https://www.cityofshawnee.org/departments/communications/coronavirus_concerns__what_shawnee_is_doing/shawnee_economic_recovery_assistance_grant_program
Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City in Kansas is offering free grants and low cost loans to small businesses in the county, with priority to MWBE, veteran, and disadvantaged borrowers. The assistance program is known as the KCK Small Business Resiliency Grant Program. Up to $10,000 will be provided from the free grant program. The money can be used to pay certain expenses such as E-Commerce, legal costs, accounting, working capital and more. Apply here. https://iparametrics-800652.workflowcloud.com/forms/b31992ca-eaf1-4b08-abd4-a37dc2d32afd
April and May 2021
Women and minority-owned businesses based in Wichita can apply for low cost, low dollar micro-loans. The funds can also help businesses with poor or bad credit. The city created a micro-loan program known PROPEL, or Providing Resources & Opportunities for Proprietors, Entrepreneurs & Lenders. When a women or minority business is qualified, they can get a loan of us much as $15,000. Apply here. wichita.gov/propel
Shawnee County small businesses and sole-proprietorships can apply for grants of up to $50,000 from the JEDO Small Business Grant Relief Program. The funds are “for-profit” businesses only with various criteria in effect, such as no past bankruptcy, minimum revenue numbers, the business have less than 26 employees and more. Minority, veteran and women owned businesses are also allocated funds. Apply here. https://supporttopeka.com/small-business-relief/
January and February 2021
The Wichita City Council is providing low cost, 3 year loans to women and minority owned companies. The funds will be issued in the Spring and Summer months, and the aim is to help disadvantaged businesses including Black, Latino, LGTBQ, Asian, and Veteran as well. Up to $15,000 can be borrowed. Learn more https://www.wichita.gov/Council/Pages/default.aspx
Businesses in the city of Leavenworth can get financial assistance from forgivable loans. The city government, using funds from the federal government Community Development Block Grant program, is offering up to $10,000 to small businesses to help them stay open or grow. Women and minority-owned businesses are encouraged to apply. Get information or applications from the Assistant City Manager Taylour Tedder. The email address is email@example.com. Or more information is here. https://www.leavenworthks.org/ed
By Jon McNamara