The Alliance Small Business Development Center was presented with a $50,000 Rural Investment for Sustainable Economies grant from Wells Fargo during the Alliance Board of Directors meeting held Monday.
The RISE grant allows the Alliance SBDC to provide 150 business owners living in rural areas of Stanislaus and Merced counties with technical assistance, one-on-one professional business consulting and training seminars at no cost. The Alliance will focus on assisting Hispanic business owners with the grant funding.
The RISE grant helps support rural nonprofits focused on job creation and workforce, economic and community development.
“Too often, small business owners in non-metro areas go without essential counseling needed to start or grow their enterprises,” said Oscar Cabello, Wells Fargo District Manager. “This funding will help the Alliance deliver these tools and resources to those who need it most. We are proud to be able to support the Alliance Small Business Development Center, and in turn help dozens of entrepreneurs reach their full potential.”
The Alliance SBDC and Wells Fargo are striving to provide traditionally underserved communities with the same professional business services found only in large urban areas.
“This Wells Fargo funding will greatly increase our efforts to assist small businesses and entrepreneurs in underserved rural communities,” said Kurtis Clark, SBDC Director. “Our professional training and consulting services greatly improve the success rate of these small businesses which often leads to them creating additional jobs in their communities.”
Many businesses would not have access to any direct consulting assistance without the professional services provided by the Alliance's SBDC program. The RISE grant helps organizations, like the Alliance, provide the services needed to help businesses thrive.
“The Alliance SBDC has a proven track record of helping people start a business, and by receiving the RISE grant can continue to feed the entrepreneurial spirit in this county,” said Bill O'Brien, Alliance board member and Stanislaus County Supervisor.