In December 2021, SmartBiz Loans announced five new recipients of the SmartBiz Grant Program. The Program was established to support minority, women, and veteran business owners during the continuing pandemic and is an extension of the SmartBiz mission to equip every entrepreneur with reliable access to smart capital. Each recipient will receive $5,000 to help them rebuild during an economy ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The SmartBiz team is committed to empowering entrepreneurs across the U.S.,” says Evan Singer, CEO of SmartBiz. “From supply chain problems to hiring issues, we know that brighter days are coming and are proud to contribute to small business rebuilding.”
Learn about the entrepreneurial journey of our grant winners and how they are weathering the pandemic.
Jasmine Parker, owner of Listen to Your Art Therapy & Empowerment Services, LLC®, located in Spring Hill, Florida. The organization provides art therapy sessions to assist teens in solving problems, increasing self-esteem, building social skills, and behavior management.
Jasmine encourages celebrating her client’s accomplishments and says, “What excites me the most about my job are the sighs of relief and smiles I get when families and teens experience real transformations! When my client's say, 'I think I'm doing better' or 'Wow, I haven't seen my child doing this well in a while, thank you.'”
Eliana Stefanitsis, owner of Molos Restaurant®, is using the proceeds for staff uniforms and vendor payments. The beautiful restaurant, located on the Hudson River in New Jersey, specializes in Greek and Mediterranean seafood. From restaurant’s website:
Our mission is to offer guests the freshest seafood available, prepared with uncompromising quality on a daily basis, while embodying the quality and pride epitomized by the generations of fishermen who would gather their daily catch on the docks from the Mediterranean Sea.
MPower Fitness®, located in Palm Coast, Florida, is owned and operated by Fatima Q. Sena. MPower Fitness is a fast growing all female gym dedicated to providing women a system, structure, and lifestyle experience of total wellness. Fatima reports that the private atmosphere provides women a platform to see their results come to life with weekly check-ins, unlimited training, customized nutritional plans, and accountability. She plans to use grant funds to help attract and serve an older demographic in their community with a high population of seniors.
Freedom Bremner describes himself on Instagram as a singer, songwriter, storyteller, and lover of waffles. He is the founder of Houseofreedom, LLC® in New Jersey.
In 2022, Freedom plans to launch The Houseofreedom All-Stars to curate boutique bands utilizing world class recording artists and musicians based in the New York/New Jersey area. He’ll use the funds to promote his new live music product service online.
Brandi Dobbins owns and operates B's Maple House Restaurant® in Ontario, California. Founded in 2020, B's Maple House specializes in soul food, blending California flavor with traditional Southern delights. B's Maple House was founded to bring Soul Food back and change the way people think of chicken and waffles. From their website: “To put it simply, we make cheat days fun!”
Brandi shares her story about owning and operating the most unique Chicken & Waffles experience in California.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: The SmartBiz® Small Business Blog and other related communications from SmartBiz Loans® are intended to provide general information on relevant topics for managing small businesses. Be aware that this is not a comprehensive analysis of the subject matter covered and is not intended to provide specific recommendations to you or your business with respect to the matters addressed. Please consult legal and financial processionals for further information.