Year round free grants, business coaching and financial resources

Some of the financial assistance programs, grants, MWBE and veteran business programs are available year round. Find details below by region, city and/or category in Virginia. In addition to those programs, scroll down the page to find more grants and loans by month.

Statewide grants, loans, and free small business and entrepreneurship programs

Foodshed Capital helps famers and food businesses across the state, including MWBE farmers who tend to be a small minority. There is a Black Farmer Fund, microlending, technical advice, assistance on the best seeds and growing techniques and more. Read about the agency here. https://foodcap.org/

Virginia MBDA, or the Minority Business Development Agency, has multiple offices in the state, including in Richmond and Alexandra. The non-profit, SBA backed center offers a number of free services to women, veterans and minorities. Get free coaching services, access to Capital (loans or free government grants), certification assistance and more. They help people create a business plan, manage cash, get financing and support the MWBE community in any way possible. Read more on the VA center here. https://www.mbda-virginia.com/

Virginia Innovation Partnership Corp. has many grant programs and small business assistance, with a focus on early-stage technology companies, MWBE companies, internet companies, cyber security firms, and venture capital firms. Federal grants and state funds are used by the organization to help companies across VA.  Learn more here. https://www.virginiaipc.org/

Charlottesville area and foothills area financial assistance programs for MWBE businesses

Charlottesville’s Minority Business Program provides ongoing, year round support. From time to time, there may be financial help from the Business Equity Fund. They are free “mini-grants”. The money can pay operating expenses including rent, utilities, inventory, web hosting, and other costs. Other resources are offered by the center to Black, Women, Latino, and other disadvantaged businesses in the city, including counseling, mentoring, networking, technical help and more. Apply here https://cvilleminoritybusinessprogram.org/

Minority Business Alliance of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce is another non-profit for the community. They offer many services to Black, Latino, and other minority companies. One of them is a grant service, and that is the MBA Endurance Fund.  More details here. https://www.cvillechamber.com/mba/

Charlottesville based food, beverage, and meal businesses can get help from the Black Entrepreneurial Advancement and Community Opportunity Network which is offered by New Hill Development Corporation. The non-profit is a social service agency for African Americans and they can provide information on capital, business plan development, economic development and other issues. Learn more. https://www.newhilldev.org/

Fairfax and Northern Virginia free grants and loan programs

Alexandria Economic Development Partnership has many programs for minority-owned businesses, women, veterans and others. There is a small business accelerator service. Free grants are offered, information on interest free loans, certification programs and more. Much of the financial help is offered with the city government. Learn more. https://alexandriaecon.org/grants/

Costello College of Business Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at George Mason has a small business incubator, and other resources, for immigrants and the community. There are programs such as RISE and SOAR, free workshops, information on ongoing grant applications and other services. Get details here. https://business.gmu.edu/centers/center-for-innovation-and-entrepreneurship

The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia has various grants offered throughout the year, with the money targeted towards non-profits that advance equity. Meaning organizations that focus on economic development of women or minority businesses, Latino and Black owned equity programs, social causes and the like will get funds. They are also involved in other regional assistance programs. Read more details here. https://www.cfnova.org/

Fairfax County Virginia Latino owned businesses can get assistance, including access to a micro-loan fund, from the Latino Economic Development Center. The non-profit also supports all of northern Virginia, with a focus on low income Latino communities. There are loans, help in creating a business, financial management services, information on raising capital, and other free advice too. Learn more. https://www.ledcmetro.org/

Fredericksburg MWBE businesses can turn to the non-profit Joshua Hand. The organization may have funds, in the form of low cost loans or grant applications, to help minority businesses get the capital they need.  It is a faith based charity that arranges capital, gives professional development, workshops on business skills development and so much more. The non-profit also partners with Growth Church on this assistance. Find details. https://www.growthchurch.org/

Harrisonburg and Rockingham area businesses owned by people of color can get help from a program called B³, which is Black and Brown Owned Business Growth Program. There are several aspects of it, including business plan development, networking, help in getting business funding/capital/loans, and more.  The service will help businesses and startups owned by Black or Brown people. Learn more here. http://www.hrchamber.org/business-assistance/

Minority owned businesses in Northern Virginia can get access to resolving loans. Freedom Bank of Virginia as well as the non-profit Northern Virginia Technology Council (NVTC) are offering assistance. Much of the funding is in the Fairfax County area. Get capital, low cost resolving loans, incubator services, free counseling and more. Read more. https://www.nvtc.org/

Northern Virginia Black Chamber of Commerce provides help all throughout northern VA.  The organization helps with marketing, small business development, grant programs, webinars and more. The goal is to help the African American and minority community succeed, both in business and overall economic development.  Learn about the financial assistance programs here. https://www.northernvirginiabcc.org/

Hampton Roads, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach region small business and start up assistance programs

Hampton Roads Black owned businesses can get financial help, free grants, and other support from BLACK Brands. This in in effect the Chamber of Commerce for the region.  It is a Hub that offers networking, free coaching services, advice and support. There is a “wealth machine”, financial literacy, information on starting a business and other help for Black members of the community. Find details here. https://blackbrand.biz/

Portsmouth area Minority and Women owned businesses can get help from the city as well as local non-profits.  The city will help businesses (1) get MWBE certification as well as (2) help them grow in any way possible. This may include grant money, free counseling, loans, mentoring, free coaching services and more. A wide variety of assistance programs, including financial, help Black women, veteran, and other disadvantaged businesses. Find details here. https://www.portsmouthva.gov/948/MWBE-Program

Richmond area and Central Virginia financial assistance, grants and counseling services

The Richmond Metropolitan Business League (MBL) is a non-profit that offers information on a number of microloan programs, grants, and provides other small business assistance. A major focus is on women, veteran, and minority owned businesses, but anyone can apply/join.  They operate the City Point Innovation Resource Center (CIRC) as well as many other programs. Learn about the non-profit here. https://thembl.org/

Richmond Black-owned businesses can get help from the Jackson Ward Collective. They focus on Black entrepreneurs or those with an idea to start a business but that need assistance. Learn about putting a business plan together, getting financing using free government grants or microloans, building credit, and much more. It is a safe community space for ideas, free resources, and short or long term support. Get details on the agency. https://jacksonwardcollective.com/

Richmond and Petersburg are entrepreneurs and small businesses can get help from the VSU Minority Small Business Launch Center.  Virginia State University offers MWBE certifications, free co-working spaces, training programs and much more. There are also pro-bono lawyers that help with business filings or patents as well as information on capital available to minorities, including loans, free grants, Angel Investors and more. Continue reading. https://minoritysmallbusinesslaunchcenter.com/