Manchester NAACP, Community Loan Fund launch business accelerator
The Community-Driven Economic Empowerment (C-DEE) program, which serves entrepreneurs of color in the Greater Manchester area, is now accepting applications for the C-DEE Accelerator. The one-time funding program is designed to help those businesses become financially resilient and self-sufficient.
Businesses may apply for up to $5,000 that can be used for computer hardware and software, and for professional services that include legal consultation, bookkeeping, marketing including website design, and business coaching or consulting.
C-DEE Accelerator funding can be used for computer hardware or software, as well as a variety of business services.
C-DEE is a pilot program of the Manchester NAACP and the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund. The Center for Women & Enterprise and the N.H. Small Business Development Center lend coaching and consulting support for the C-DEE Accelerator.
“A Pew Research study reports that White Americans accounted for a large majority (86%) of firms whose ownership was classifiable by race and ethnicity in 2020. These firms brought in 93% of all revenue from classifiable companies that year,” said James McKim, President of the Manchester NAACP. “We partnered with the NH Community Loan Fund to create the C-DEE program to address this disparity. This is just one of our many efforts to bring economic justice to the Greater Manchester area.”
“Many entrepreneurs of color have told us they could grow their businesses with a boost from computer technology and professional services, like bookkeeping,” said Carlos Rincon, a Community Loan Fund Business Lender and the C-DEE program manager. “These businesses are an integral part of our community. Connecting them to these resources will help augment their impact.”
C-DEE’s Community Business Advisory Council, comprising Manchester business owners and community leaders, will determine the funding recipients. Rincon said every applicant, regardless of whether they receive funding, will be eligible to work with a coach or consultant at no charge.
Entrepreneurs of color in Manchester, Hooksett, Auburn, Londonderry, Litchfield, Merrimack, Bedford and Goffstown. are eligible to apply. Business owners can apply online. Also, entrepreneurs of color can attend a workshop and get help with their applications May 6, from 9 to 11 a.m., in the Community Loan Fund’s Manchester office at 30 Amherst St. Awardees will be notified the week of May 22; an awards celebration will be held May 31.
Entrepreneurs of color who would like to learn more about the program or apply should email CDEE@communityloanfund.org.