As the Covid-19 crisis has continued, many businesses are still struggling to stay afloat and keep up with the ever changing operating guidelines provided by the county and state. Economic recovery in City Heights has been especially challenging, as many local businesses did not receive economic aid through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was intended to provide loans to small businesses negatively impacted by pandemic.
Observing the economic strain the pandemic has placed on the community, and realizing that federal money is not making it to many of the businesses who needed it most, the City Heights Business Association joined with other local economic and community development organizations to create the City Heights Business Relief Fund.
In collaboration with the City Heights Community Development Corporation, the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association, International Rescue Committee, and LISC San Diego, the Relief Fund initially raised nearly $190,000 to help local businesses, many of which are minority and woman-owned.
In July, grants ranging from $4,000 to $10,000 were awarded to 35 City Heights businesses. These grants have been highly successful in helping businesses continue operations. Since these funds were distributed, an additional $90,000 has been raised and will be awarded to 20-25 businesses that did not receive funding during the first round of grants.