Funding your business as a woman can be tasking, especially when there are unfair practices surrounding obtaining business grants for women. With a record number of female entrepreneurs launching businesses and making progress, there are a lot of business grants to apply for, even though terms and funding levels differ.
This article will list the top small business grants for women and how to apply for each.
Why Should Female Entrepreneurs Apply For Business Grants?
For many businesses, raising capital is essential to success. However, women-owned firms confront different obstacles when attracting investors and financing.
Even though by 2019, more than 40% of U.S. enterprises were owned by women, in 2020, about 98% of venture capital funding for new startups went to male founders.
Female business owners experience a disproportionately high percentage of difficulties getting their applications for business funding authorized compared to their male counterparts.
According to the Federal Reserve’s 2021 Small Business Credit Survey, just 12% of women-owned businesses reported receiving the total amount of credit they requested from lenders, compared to 14% of companies run by men.
Additionally, it’s important to remember that, in the same year, 82% of businesses operated by males and 82% of businesses owned by women applied for Covid-19 assistance funds under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
When business loans and equity financing prove difficult, female entrepreneurs can also consider business grants for women. Competition for business grants can be high, but if you qualify, you can gain an infusion of cash for your company that you never have to repay.
Top 10 Business Grants For Women In 2023
Here is a list of the ten best business grants for women in 2023:
- Cartier Women’s Initiative Award
- Alpha Kappa Educational Advancement Foundation (EAF)
- Enterprising Women of Color (EWOC)
- Eileen Fisher Women-owned Business Grant
- Tory Burch Foundation
- The Halstead Grant
- Lowe’s Small Business Relief Grant
- Black Girl Ventures
Grants.gov is one of the first places you might want to visit if you’re looking for business grants for women. The website includes a list of federal awards available to both men and women. The database’s search function allows you to browse for grants created, especially with women company owners in mind.
You must sign up on the Grants.gov Workspace account to apply for this business grant. Once you do so, you and other team members can edit and complete individual grant applications available through the database.
Before you start the application procedure, confirm that you or your company are eligible for the grants in question. The Grants.gov database offers comprehensive information about eligibility requirements for each funding opportunity.
2. Cartier Women’s Initiative Award
This yearly initiative was established in 2006 by the Cartier Women’s Initiative to empower female business owners. Applications for the prizes are accepted from companies run or controlled by women, including:
- Awards across ten regions. Each region receives a total of three funds for a total of 30 grants. Each winner of the first place prize receives $100,000, followed by the winners of the second and third places with $60,000 and $30,000,, respectively.
- Science & Technology Pioneer Award. These awards are the same as the regional awards.
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award. Cartier, Women’s Initiative has not yet disclosed the grant award amounts. However, the next application period will begin on May 16, 2022. To learn more about this prize, subscribe to the Cartier Women’s Initiative website’s newsletter.
The Cartier Women’s Initiative regional awards application is available for download online. You must show that your company is woman-owned or -run and that its goal is to have a positive and long-lasting influence on society or the environment to qualify. Grant applications for 2023 will be accepted starting on May 16 and ending on July 15, 2022.
3. Alpha Kappa Educational Advancement Foundation (EAF)
Alpha Kappa Educational Advancement Foundation (EAF), a renowned organization, provides fellowships, scholarships, awards for community service, and grants for small businesses to help African American women.
The program aims to reduce economic disparities and provide participants with opportunities and financial flexibility to increase their educational funding options.
GrantsforWomen.org, an online resource established in 2000, assists female company owners in discovering and evaluating a range of grant and scholarship options. The platform seeks to make it possible for women worldwide to accomplish their professional objectives.
Each program has a unique application procedure for grants. You can find grants that might be a good fit for your company by visiting their website. When you’re ready to apply, you’ll next need to follow the steps given by those specific organizations.
You may want to see this: Top 15 Grants For Homeless Individuals In 2023 | Requirements
5. Enterprising Women of Color (EWOC)
The group of minority women entrepreneurs is expanding at the fastest rate. Even though many women succeed wildly in the business world, they still encounter challenges when starting their businesses.
MBDA advocates for women’s economic empowerment by providing grant initiatives to promote women’s equality and economic advancement programming. EWOC’s mission is to support women’s economic empowerment globally.
6. Eileen Fisher Women-owned Business Grant
The Eileen Fisher organization, a women’s apparel company established over three decades ago, grants $200,000 annually to deserving women-owned enterprises. The grant amounts per recipient range from $10,000 to $40,000.
The following are the categories of women entrepreneurs to be considered for the grant:
- Women interested in decision-making processes concerning the environment.
- If you promote female participation in a sustainable economy.
- If you are involved in teaching girls how to adapt to climate change and influence the current climate change policies.
To qualify, your company must also demonstrate that it offers direct services to its clients and be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization registered with the IRS (or have a fiscal sponsor).
Additionally, you must be proficient in English to complete your application and any subsequent interviews.
7. Tory Burch Foundation
Another well-known clothing company that offers awards for female entrepreneurs is the Tory Burch Foundation. In addition to providing $5,000 grants for business education, the foundation also attempts to support women-owned businesses by:
- Providing access to business capital
- Granting access to professional workshops and seminars
- Network and collaboration with female founders.
Qualified companies may acquire grants valued between $10,000 and $20,000 through this program.
To qualify for this business grant for women, you must be a woman with at least 51% state in your business. Each year 50 black women entrepreneurs are selected.
8. The Halstead Grant
The Halstead Grant is a small-enterprise grant program established in 2006 and is targeted toward female business owners who own firms in the jewelry sector.
It is awarded to upcoming American female jewelry designers each summer. To qualify for this grant, you need to be a student or experienced jewelry designer seeking a full-time career in metal jewelry creation, have a line of metal jewelry that contains a considerable amount of sterling or fine silver, and have a unified collection of metal jewelry for resale are all prerequisites.
Eligible applicants also need to be U.S. citizens who can sell nationally. A $7,500 cash scholarship and $1,000 in Halstead jewelry supplies are given to the winners.
9. Lowe’s Small Business Relief Grant
The Lowe’s Small Business Relief Grant has given out grants totaling $52.6 million. Women run 67% of these small businesses. As a result, grants are readily available to registered business owners who need money to build their companies.
The fund provides information and guidance to help small company owners get through the pandemic and stay afloat.
As part of their commitment to increase their impact in rural America, LISC has teamed up with Lowe’s to award Rural Relief Small Business Grants to small business owners in rural locations across the country.
Grants of $20,000 are available to assist rural small businesses in meeting their most urgent needs, such as:
- Upgrading technology infrastructure
- Meeting payroll
- Paying rent and utilities
- Paying outstanding debt to vendors
- Other immediate operational costs
10. Black Girl Ventures
By giving them a forum, BGV acts as a launchpad for the companies of black female entrepreneurs. The platform allows black female entrepreneurs to access financial and social capital.
In a word, the objective is for them to succeed in reaching the objectives they have established for their company.
Female Founders Fund is one of the institutional financing options available to female business owners. The fund’s enterprise value, which has increased to almost three billion dollars, represents a significant financial opportunity for female entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups and black communities who want funding to realize their aspirations.
This organization aims to help Black/Brown women entrepreneurs reach key business milestones that result in economic growth through entrepreneurship by giving them access to community, funding, and capacity building.
You may want to check this out: Innotribe Startup Challenge Africa for Young Entrepreneurs
How To Secure Business Grant For Women
Getting approved for a grant is difficult, so prepare for a lot of time and work if you decide to apply.
Most grants have strict requirements or particular qualifications, so the most challenging part is often finding grants you are well suited for. While the exact process differs according to the specific grant, you can follow these tips to increase your chances of approval:
1. Do your research
Various grants are available for women, each with specific requirements and qualifications, so the best way to raise your chances of receiving a grant is to look up as many as possible.
Many grant directories are online, such as GuideStar, GrantStation, Grant Gopher, Terra Viva, and Grants.gov.
Related Post: Top 20 School Grants For Women in 2023 | Apply Now
2. Confirm you are qualified to apply for the grant
Before undertaking the demanding process of applying for a grant, make sure you meet all the requirements. Grants are usually tailored to suit a specific category of people, so take your time and ensure you review the process before you commence the application.
3. Clearly explain why you need the grant and how to intend to spend it
Before applying for a grant, you must know precisely how you plan to use the funds and why you think they should be awarded. Be prepared to submit charts, graphs, projection sheets, or other documents that clearly illustrate your intentions.
4. Consider hiring a grant writer if need be
The grant application process can be so challenging that an entire profession is devoted to it. A grant writer can help you satisfy all the requirements and package your application well.
FAQs On Business Grants For Women
In any situation, starting a small business is difficult, but in a bad economy, it becomes considerably more difficult. This is partially due to the difficulty in obtaining finance during tight credit markets.
No. Grants do not require repayment of any kind.
A business grant is a money from federal, state, county, or local governments, private firms, or corporations to a person, business, or corporation.
The difference between loans and a grant is that loans are not free; they need to be repaid with interest, while grants are not repaid.
Various choices are available for female business owners in cities across the U.S. needing business grants.
Applying for a small-business grant may take longer than applying for a loan, and there is a significant chance that you won’t get accepted. You should try using it if the program makes sense, as numerous award programs are open to everyone and explicitly targeted toward women.
The most excellent aspect of small business grants is that there is no requirement for payback, so the money is yours to use for your company.
- nerdwallet.com – Small-Business Grants for Women: Best Options for Free Funding
- forbes.com – 11 Business Grants For Women: Receive Free Money
We Also Recommend
- 15 Best Grants for Adults with Disabilities in UK | 2023 Application
- 15 Best Grants for New Businesses in Wales | 2023 Requirements
- Best Grants for Home Improvements in UK | 2023 Application Guide
- 10 Government Grants For Solar Panels In the UK
- 15 Best Grants for Single Parents in UK | 2023 Requirements