County Funds Will Aid Religious Groups and Other Nonprofits

Attending the announcement of Westchester County’s Business FIRST Grant Program are (from left)  Deputy County Executive Ken Jenkins; Brother Abdel Nasser Nofal, Principal, Andalusia School; Crystal Collins, Director of Faith-based Initiatives and Urban Affairs for Westchester County; Bridget Gibbons, Director of the Office of Economic Development for Westchester County; Hussein Rababah, Arab American Advisory Board;  John Williams, Founder/CEO, Christian Funding Center, Inc.; Westchester County Executive George Latimer

The Westchester County Office of Economic Development is now accepting applications for the 2022 Westchester County Business FIRST Grant Program. The funding will provide up to $17 million to support nonprofits and religious organizations facing challenges as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. Applications will be accepted online through Friday, March 18.    

 

Westchester County Business FIRST: Financial Investments for Recovery and a Sustainable Tomorrow provides immediate financial relief to organizations in Westchester County that have been adversely affected by the pandemic. The current round of funding will provide qualifying nonprofits and religious organizations with grants of up to $45,000. Grants will be provided on a reimbursable basis only and recipients must provide receipts to Community Capital before any funds will be disbursed.  

The County is offering technical assistance to help nonprofit and religious organizations with the application process. The goal is to ensure that the process to complete the application and submit it, along with the required documentation, isn’t a barrier to potential applicants. To facilitate this a number of experienced nonprofits will be providing support, led by Jan Fisher, Executive Director of Nonprofit Westchester. Organizations needing help applying for a grant can email Business-FIRST@westchestergov.com. 

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To be eligible for a grant, the organization’s primary location must be in Westchester County. The organization must be currently open with plans to stay open, or temporarily closed with plans to reopen in 2022.  

Organizations who received funding from the federal government through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) are eligible to apply but the use of the 2022 Business FIRST grant funds should not duplicate purposes. Organizations who received a Business FIRST Grant in 2020 from Westchester County are not eligible for this grant opportunity, nor are organizations who received or will receive a Shuttered Venue Operators Grant from the SBA. 

The Westchester County Business FIRST grant program is being administered by the Westchester County Office of Economic Development through the American Rescue Plan. 

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Westchester County Executive George Latimer said, “Our nonprofits and religious organizations have been a vital resource to the communities they support throughout the duration of the pandemic. This round of grant funding is an investment in organizations that are critical to our residents and in need of financial relief.” 

“Westchester County’s nonprofits and religious organizations play an important role in our community and our economy,” said Bridget Gibbons, Westchester County Director of Economic Development. “Many of the beneficiary organizations have faced an increased demand for services, significant costs for personal protective equipment (PPE), loss of funding, and other pandemic-related challenges that have impacted their operating costs and income. This grant funding will help to cover some of their expenses as they continue providing invaluable services throughout our communities.” 

 

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