Mayor Turner joins Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity and Wells Fargo to launch OPEN FOR BUSINESS grant portal

City hall press release

Mayor Turner joins Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity and Wells Fargo to launch OPEN FOR BUSINESS grant portal

$20 million earmarked for various Houston-area small businesses and nonprofits Applications accepted August 9-23, 2022

July 28, 2022 — Mayor Sylvester Turner joined the Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity in partnership with Wells Fargo on Tuesday, July 26, to announce the launch of the Open for Business Grant Portal to distribute $20 million to the diversity of the Houston area, small businesses and non-profit organizations.

Starting Tuesday, August 9, business owners will have the opportunity to apply for grants ranging from $10,000 to $65,000.

“Opening this portal is an incredible step toward the progress we initiated in May 2021 when we created the Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity. We provide access to much-needed funds for small businesses in color and Houston nonprofits that focus on equal opportunity. This will strengthen their work, allow them to thrive, expand their reach and support innovation,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner, who has come a long way in a short time and is now funding fundamental change in the Houston community.

The Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity will distribute the funding in the form of grants over a three-year period for the purchase of goods, equipment and other tangible assets, supporting economic development in communities underserved. It is estimated that the funding will reach more than 500 small businesses in Houston and is intended to help business owners and nonprofits with new ways to grow and increase capacity.

“We are honored to work with Wells Fargo to bridge the economic equity gap between small businesses and underrepresented and underfunded nonprofits in Houston,” said Thomas Jones, Chairman of the Board of Wells Fargo. administration of the Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity. “The fruit of this partnership is instilling hope in the community and positively impacting its business trajectory.”

To be eligible, an applicant’s 501c3 business or nonprofit must be located in the Houston area, must have 50 or fewer employees, be led by people of color, and be established before 31 December 2021. All applications must be submitted. between Tuesday, August 9 at 9 a.m. and Tuesday, August 23 at 11:59 p.m. CST via the e-portal link which can be found by visiting www.houstonequityfund.com.

The $20 million in grants, first announced in February, come from Wells Fargo’s Open for Business Fund, an approximately $420 million nationwide small business recovery effort focused on racially diverse small business owners. and ethnicities, which have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. The fund was created from the gross processing fees Wells Fargo received from Paycheck Protection Program loans made in 2020. Wells Fargo donated funds to community development financial institutions (CDFIs) and organizations local nonprofits across the country.

About the Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity
The Houston Fund for Social Justice and Economic Equity (Houston Equity Fund) implements transformational change by investing in resource organizations and initiatives that empower and uplift communities of color. Houston Equity Fund is committed to taking actions that encourage equitable systems change, while operating with transparency and fairness. The Fund is committed to implementing a reporting and evaluation framework that reflects the common goal of the Houston Equity Fund and its supporters: meaningful and lasting change for marginalized communities of color. A key aspect of being transformative is adopting a rigorous process to select and fund organizations aligned with four main focus areas: social and racial justice, youth empowerment and education, community building, and economic development.

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