Your Link to Opportunities and Information - Volume 6
A message from James Sanders, Commercial & Industrial Lending Customers Bank
Registration is Open!
PI>OTWEEK features virtual keynotes, virtual workshops, social distancing networking mixers, and virtual panel discussions that support innovation and entrepreneurship. This premiere summit features groundbreaking conversations with business leaders from around the country. The aim of PI>OTWEEK is to educate, facilitate connections and build new partnerships and opportunities. Visit for more information.
Participate in Virtual Matchmaking
Our “Virtual Matchmaker” is up and running and connects buyers to entrepreneurs with sourcing solutions. Please click the appropriate below link and answer a few brief questions to begin the matchmaking process. An EMSDC representative will contact you with potential matches and additional instructions. MBEs, if there's products that you need we encourage you to also complete the buyer registration.

Supplier (MBE) Registration:

Buyer (Corporations and other buying entities) Registration:

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Critical Medical Supplies Procurement Portal
Pennsylvania needs critical medical supplies. To fulfill this need, the departments of Community and Economic Development, Health, General Services, and the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency have developed the  Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Critical Medical Supplies Procurement Portal  (the “Portal”) to source the most needed medical supplies. The Portal is for manufacturers, distributors and other suppliers to inform us of supplies available for purchase and will allow the Commonwealth to more quickly and efficiently procure these supplies for hospitals and medical facilities across Pennsylvania. Read more.

Current Bids
COVID-19 Antibody Test Kits and Hand Santizer
Please contact

Hand Sanitizer, Surface Sanitizing Wipes, Disposable Gloves

April 30.2020

City of Harrisburg
April 30, 2020

Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) and Allegheny County Airport
May 1, 2020

May 4, 2020

Community College of Allegheny County & Mascaro Construction
May 6, 2020

Philadelphia Housing Authority
May 8, 2020

Allegheny County Airport Authority
May 13,2020

City of Philadelphia
May 13,2020

May 13, 2020

May 13,2020

Community College of Allegheny County
May 13,2020

Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority
May 21,2020

City of Philadelphia
June 3, 2020
SBA Updates on EIDL and PPP
Due to a lapse in appropriations, SBA is unable to accept new applications at this time for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and Advance based on available appropriations funding. Questions regarding the status of your Paycheck Protection Program application can be submitted to your lender directly. EIDL applicants who have already submitted their applications will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-served basis. If you have submitted an application call SBA's 24/7 Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 to check the status of your loan number. Click here to sign up to receive email updates from the SBA. Information on SBA’s programs for coronavirus can be found here .

SBA Community Advantage
The SBA launched the Community Advantage (CA) loan program to assist small businesses in underserved markets.  Read more.

SBA Express Bridge
The Express Bridge loan program allows SBA Express lenders to provide expedited financing to small businesses located in declared disaster areas. Express Bridge loans are intended to be interim loans. Businesses use these funds for disaster-related purposes while they apply for and await long-term financing. Read more.

COVID-19 Working Capital Access Program (CWCA)
The COVID-19 Working Capital Access (CWCA) Program is administered by the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority (PIDA) and provides critical working capital financing to small businesses located within the Commonwealth that are adversely impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more.

The Enterprise Center Capital Corporation (TEC-CC) offers both microloans and traditional small business loans of up to $500,000.
If you need a loan under $50,000, you may be eligible through TEC-CC for a microloan: a short‐term, fixed rate, fixed payment loan up to $50,000 made to start‐up or growing small businesses. Microloan applications are reviewed and approved by the internal loan review committee, which is composed of TEC staff members.   Read more.

Bridgeway Capital Loans
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Bridgeway’s patient, flexible capital and free technical assistance is available to help small businesses stay resilient when facing business disruptions and changing cashflows. Financing solutions and loan modifications are tailored to the needs of your small business. Bridgeway’s financing is designed to work with credit challenges, collateral gaps, and complex transactions in need of creative funding solutions. Read more.

Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA)
The URA is temporarily easing and streamlining its Micro-Enterprise Loan Program to provide 0% interest loans to existing and new URA small business borrowers. Read more.

Verizon and LISC Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Fund
Verizon’s investment of $2.5 million into a  Recovery Fund , is making it possible for LISC to begin offering critical relief and resiliency-building support to small businesses. The funding will go to make grants of up to $10,000, especially to entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises in historically under-served places who don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital. First Round is closed. Use this Link to register for next round that will launch in Mid-April. Read more.

Facebook Small Business Grants Program
Facebook is offering  $100M in cash grants and ad credits  for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where Facebook operates, including the U.S. Read more.

For Nonprofits - The Pittsburgh Foundation Emergency Action Fund
The Emergency Action Fund has been established at The Pittsburgh Foundation to accept contributions from their donors and from corporations, foundations and the community at large. The Fund aims to support and strengthen the nonprofit human services network and infrastructure during this crisis period. The Fund will award small operating grants on a rolling basis to nonprofit organizations seeking to meet basic needs, especially of the most vulnerable.  Read more.

Kiva Loans
The Kiva Pittsburgh program at Riverside Center for Innovation (RCI) helps business owners to apply for and crowdfund 0% interest loans with During the COVID-19 outbreak, loans can be as much as $15,000 with a 6-month grace period. Read more.

Save Small Business Grants
Funded by corporate and philanthropic partners, the Save Small Business Fund is a collective effort to provide $5,000 grants to as many small employers as they can. Eligible organizations include small businesses and chambers of commerce (with a 501©6 status) that employ between three and 20 people and are located in an economically vulnerable community. Grant decisions will be made on a weekly, rolling basis until all funding has been allocated.  Read more.

Salesforce Care Small Business Grants
As part of Salesforce’s commitment to small businesses and giving back to the community, Salesforce is partnering with Ureeka to offer eligible small businesses the opportunity to receive a $10,000 grant to help them through the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more.

The Critical Community Needs Fund (CCNF)
POISE Foundation is proud to announce the creation of a new fund to provide support to small and mid-sized Black Led Organizations (BLOs) responding to critical needs in the Black community resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. CCNF will provide grants between $5,000 and $25,000 to small and mid-sized BLOs serving the most vulnerable members of the Black community in the Pittsburgh region. Read more.
Filing for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
You can now apply for PUA, expanded eligibility for individuals who have traditionally been ineligible for unemployment benefits (e.g. self-employed workers, independent contractors, gig workers). Read more.

Facebook Community Support Page
To make it easier for people to get help and to find out how to offer support in local communities impacted by COVID-19, we’ve launched a new Community Help Section on . Here you can request help or offer it to someone in need, donate to fundraisers and volunteer for nonprofits in your community, all in one place. Read more.

HR Advice from SHRM:
Revise Policies to Facilitate Return to Work
Before employees start returning to work onsite, employers need to define the new normal by creating or revising policies to address a range of critical workplace issues, including employee relations and benefits. Read more.

Professional Services Firm Now Offering PPE
CrossTech is a professional services firm that has made a pivot to offer PPE including medical grade sanitizer, surgical masks, and regular N95 masks ; They expect to bring on additional items in the very near future and are exploring warehousing opportunities as well. Please feel free to distribute to EMSDC/MSDC companies; please note, a separate pricing structure exists for government/non-profit entities. I am happy to be of service on the brink of receiving my minority certification! 
Manufacturing Surgical Masks
Playtime Edventures LLC produces interactive bed linen for Children's Hospital. During the COVID - 19 pandemic we are now manufacturing surgical masks. We have a container of 200,000 masks arriving on May 19th to our Monroe, NC warehouse and we will start shipping on May 20th. 
  • Economic Impact Payments Arriving - The IRS has started distributing Economic Impact Payments. The payments, also referred to by some as stimulus payments, are automatic for most taxpayers. No further action is needed by taxpayers who filed tax returns in 2018 and 2019 and most seniors and retirees. You can also track your payment using the Get My Payment tool. Read more.
  • Senate approves $480 billion package to help small businesses and hospitals, expand testing- The Senate passed a roughly $480 billion relief package Tuesday that includes hundreds of billions of dollars in new funding for small businesses hurt by the coronavirus outbreak along with other priorities like money for hospitals and expanded Covid-19 testing. Read more.

  • GOVERNOR WOLF VETOES SB 613; SIGNS SB 841 - Gov. Wolf has vetoed SB 613 which would have used a Federal Standard to define essential/non-essential businesses vs the list established by the Governor and waiver process. The Governor did sign legislation for on-line notary and other similar services that will open up on-line sales of automobiles. Additionally, he announced limited construction we be allowed to re-open on May 8th, along with curbside liquor sales by PA State Stores that started today. Read more.
  • Mask Requirements - Essential businesses must provide masks for their employees and require them to wear the masks, according to the order from Pennsylvania's Department of Health. Customers at these businesses must wear masks while on the premises or be denied entry.
  • Gov. Wolf: Reopening Targeted for May 8 in North-Central, Northwest - Governor Tom Wolf today presented his detailed plan for reopening the commonwealth with a targeted May 8 start. The administration will categorize reopening into three phases: red, yellow, green. Phases will be assigned based on conditions in a county, counties or region. Read more.

  • June 2 is the new Primary election date.
  • Governor John Carney expanded his community call-to-action on April 22, 2020, Governor Carney Partners with Health Providers and Sussex Employers on Community Testing Sites, Outreach, Education. The previous week’s community call-to-action on April 17,2020, Delaware Department of Labor Released Guidelines on 13 Week Extension of Unemployment Benefits.

New Jersey
  • Mask requirements - The first state to introduce such a mandate, New Jersey requires that customers and employees wear face coverings at essential businesses and construction sites. Businesses must provide them to employees and deny entry to any customers who refuse to wear them (though the customer can still pick up their food or medicine by alternate, contact-free means). Employees and commuters on New Jersey public transmit and private carriers must wear face coverings while on trains, buses and light rails. If they refuse to wear them, they may be denied entry.
Black Doctors Consortium Launches Coronavirus Testing Initiative in Philadelphia
A group of medical professionals is bringing testing for the novel coronavirus directly to Philadelphia’s African-American community. The Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium loaded up a van and drove throughout the city to offer coronavirus testing at select locations. Read more and donate.

Blood and Plasma Donations Needed
Donating blood products is essential to community health and the need for blood products is constant. As part of our nation’s critical infrastructure, healthy individuals can still donate in areas that have issued shelter in place declarations. The Red Cross follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and volunteer donors are the only source of blood for those in need. Read more .

Gift Card Give Back Program
The  Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership  and  Strip District Neighbors  are teaming up to provide funds for the Gift Card Give Back Initiative. For a limited time, for every gift card you purchase through this site, we'll add an extra 25% bonus, with revenue going right to your favorite businesses. Read more.

Healthy NewsWorks
Engaging Students as Health Reporters

Since 2003, Healthy NewsWorks elementary and middle school students have encouraged healthful living by producing accurate, and relevant health publications and other types of media for their fellow students, families, and the wider school community. In the process, they deepen health awareness and understanding on such pressing issues as obesity, bullying, prescription drug safety, and asthma.  Check out their reporting on the coronavirus pandemic.
We have created a new Microsoft Yammer page, EMSDC MBE Connects. This is a private group where EMSDC Corporate Members, MBEs, and Subscribers can connect with each other, post information, and view posts from EMSDC. Although our in-person events have been postponed, we hope to keep the EMSDC community engaged and connected through the new Yammer group and upcoming webinars.

 Click here to log in . If you have any questions about accessing Yammer or if you did not receive your invitation to join please email Tricina Cash on our team at and she will be able to assist you.
Certification and Re-certification Update
There has been no change in the processing cycle for new and re-certification applications. Notarized affidavits are currently non-applicable, and you will need to submit within 30 days of the quarantine being lifted. We are working daily to keep things moving forward for our entrepreneurs. Feel free to contact us: or
New Virtual Office Hours
EMSDC is proactively taking COVID-19 precautions and is therefore working virtually until further notice. Please send an email or use the extensions at 215-569-1005 or 412-391-4423 to leave a voicemail. We will get back to you by the close of business.

Beginning the week of May 4 th , EMSDC will implement “Virtual Office Hours.” MBEs can make appointments with any member of the team during these set hours for assistance and information. Please email a calendar invitation to secure your time.

Reminder to take COVID-19 Impact Survey
Thank you to the over 150 business owners that completed our survey. If you didn't there's still time to participate in our survey to understand the nature of the COVID-19 impact as told by the actual business owners themselves. Read more.