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Small businesses get boost from Enterprise Brant

Kathleen Grace turned a childhood experience into a successful business. “I was eight years old and at a YMCA camp and it was a group of hippies taking care of us,” said the 59-year-old lifelong Brantford resident. “They had the long hair going and
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“We approached Enterprise Brant and they were wonderful.”

Enterprise Brant, a non-profit economic development organization, provided Grace with a loan.

“This funding saved my business,” she said. “With reduced sales, particularly during curbside pickup, this funding was just enough to help with the rent and keep me afloat.

“I was grateful to have this option.”

Moonshadows is just one of many local businesses and organizations to have received financial help from Enterprise Brant, which provides a range of services to local businesses.

The organization developed a special COVID-19 relief loan program to help local businesses and deferred payments or accepted interest-only payments on existing loans.

The relief loans, worth up to $40,000 were available with no interest or payments to December 2022, with the potential to forgive 25 per cent or up to $10,000. Funding for the program was provided by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

Locally, 26 loans worth just over $1 million were approved, said Cindy Swanson, general manager of Enterprise Brant.

The organization’s board set aside $125,000 for a special projects fund to provide grants to local non-profit organizations and charities struggling because of the pandemic.

Grants were provided to Canadian Industrial Heritage Museum, Brantford Minor Baseball, Brant Theatre Workshops, Children’s Safety Village, Hearts to Home, Feline Rescue, Crossing All Bridges, Crime Stoppers, Arady Brantford, Brantford Moose Lodge, Arnold Anderson Sport Fund, Rotary Club of Brantford Sunrise, Rotary Cub of Brantford, Grand River Council on Aging, The Raw Carrot Soup Enterprise, Paris Soccer Club, SPCA and Laurier Launchpad – Pitch competition.

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