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After Raising More than $1 Million, My Block, My Hood, My City Is Accepting Applications for Small Business Fund

Businesses can apply for a Small Business Relief Grant through July 1 to help reopen during the coronavirus pandemic and rebuild after possible damages from looting.

Jahmal Cole
My Block, My Hood, My City
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DOWNTOWN — My Block, My Hood, My City raised more than $1 million for its Small Business Relief Fund and is now looking for groups to get the money.

Businesses can apply online for the organization’s Small Business Relief Grant program through July 1. The grants are meant to help small businesses reopen during the coronavirus pandemic and rebuild after possible damages from looting.

Businesses must be for-profits, located within Chicago, employ 20 or fewer full-time staff and have earned less than $2 million in 2019 to be considered, according to a press release from the organization.

Grants will range in size and could be up to $7,500. Selected businesses can use the grants to restock inventory, provide personal protective equipment to employees and repair storefront damage, among other needs.

Grant applications will be reviewed by the “impact” the money will have, according to the group. Black and Brown business owners and businesses serving low-to-moderate income areas will receive additional consideration in the process.

“The businesses that need help are diverse and located all over the city,” Jahmal Cole, founder of My Block, My Hood, My City, said in the press release. “From diamond stores Downtown to food trucks in Garfield Park, we will focus on essential businesses that serve our communities.

“At the heart of the work we do, we’re just trying to do some good and provide relief for those that need it, doing whatever it takes to make a difference.”

The Southeast Chicago Chamber of Commerce will serve as the fiduciary for the fund, aiding in the application process and distributing funds.

The average donation to the fund was $69. Cole wrote in the release the organization is “grateful for the overwhelming response” to help small businesses.

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