New Grant Program Seeks to Boost Veteran-Owned Businesses
Organizations that help address the entrepreneurial needs of veterans may be eligible to receive grants of up to $50,000, under a new program launched by the Veterans Corporation.
The Veterans Corporation, a federally-chartered non-profit dedicated to "creating and enhancing entrepreneurial business opportunities for veterans, including service-disabled veterans" is seeking applicants for its new Veteran Entrepreneurship Support grant initiative.
Grants will be awarded in two categories -- education and outreach. Educational programs include transition preparation for deployed active-duty military and classroom programs for veterans looking to start or grow small businesses. Outreach programs include start-up counseling, professional workshops, and transition assistance for veterans exiting the military.
"The goal is pretty simple," said Walt Blackman, president and CEO of the Washington-based group. "We want to make sure people who provide those services have the money to reach out to veterans and members of the National Guard and Reserves."
According to Blackman, it is "hard to tell" how many grants will be awarded because it is the first full year of the initiative. "We are excited to have as many applicants as possible to choose from," he said.
The Veterans Corporation was created by the Veterans Entrepreneurship and Small business Development Act of 1999 and its Board of Directors is appointed by the President of the United States.
Veteran-owned small businesses currently contribute over $202 billion to the U.S. economy, according to the Veterans Corporation.