All Resources

CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

UPDATEAs of April 27, the Small Business Administration (SBA) started accepting PPP applications from lenders.

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses, nonprofits, veterans organizations, tribal businesses, ESOPs and cooperatives with fewer than 500 employees, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors, including gig workers. Find more info on size standards and eligibility details here.
  • What it is: The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan provides a direct incentive for small businesses to keep employees on their payroll. The Small Business Administration will forgive loans if all employees are kept on payroll for eight weeks and if the money is primarily used to cover payroll, rent, mortgage, interest, or utilities.
  • Take action: You can apply for the PPP through participating SBA-approved lenders. This program will be available through June 30, 2020.
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

CARES Act debt relief for existing or new SBA loans

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses with existing or new SBA loans. Read more eligibility info here. (Paycheck Protection loans and SBA Disaster Loans are not eligible; however, payments are already deferred under those loans.)
  • What it is: As you overcome challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the SBA Debt Relief program will pay the principal, interest, and fees for qualifying new and current loans.
  • Take action: For more information, contact your SBA lender or your local SBA office and search for local resources
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

CARES Act SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) for up to $2 million and an advance for up to $10,000

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses, nonprofits, veterans organizations, tribal businesses, ESOPs and cooperatives with less than 500 employees, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors, including gig workers.
  • What it is: 
    • Loan (EIDL): If you’re a small business owner in any U.S. state, you can apply for an emergency long-term low-interest loan through the Small Business Administration (SBA). The loan can be up to $2 million, providing vital economic support to help you overcome the loss of your business’s revenue due to the COVID-19 impact. 
    • Advance: To get an advance of $1,000 per employee, up to $10,000, first apply for an EIDL. Then, request the advance within 3 days. The advance does not need to be repaid and can be used to keep employees on payroll, pay for sick leave, meet increased production costs, or pay business obligations like rent or mortgage. 
  • Take action: 
    • Apply online for up to a $2 million EIDL or check the status of an existing loan application. Read more about the application process and eligibility details. You must opt into the loan advance while completing the loan application.
    • Need immediate support while waiting for your application’s decision or disbursement? Learn about the SBA Bridge Loan Pilot Program.
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

SBA Express Disaster Bridge Loan for up to $25,000

  • Who’s eligible: Any of the following who have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender: small businesses, nonprofits, veterans organizations, tribal businesses, ESOPs and cooperatives with less than 500 employees, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors.
  • What it is: If you have an existing relationship with a Small Business Administration Express Lender, you can apply to become a part of the Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program. You can quickly access up to $25,000 to overcome temporary loss of revenue while you apply for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster loan (EIDL). 
  • Take action: Read the information and follow the instructions in the SBA Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program Guide
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

Existing SBA Disaster Loans are being automatically deferred

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses with an existing SBA Disaster Loan
  • What it is: If you’re currently paying back an existing SBA Disaster Loan, your loan is automatically in deferment through December 31, 2020. You may also be able to refinance your existing SBA Disaster Loan into your Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan, possibly lowering your interest rate.
  • Learn more: Read the announcement and find more details on the SBA website.
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

Denver Small Business Emergency Relief grant for up to $7,500

  • Who’s eligible: Small business owners within the city and county of Denver who have lost the ability to operate
  • What it is: If your business is in an industry that’s been greatly impacted by COVID-19 and you’ve lost the ability to operate, you can apply for a cash grant (up to $7,500) to help with rent, utilities, etc. Eligible businesses include restaurants, retail shops, nail salons, barbershops, and more. 
  • Take action: Fill out this form to submit your information to the Denver Economic Development & Opportunity team, who will evaluate your information and be in touch.
  • From: City and County of Denver, Denver Economic Development & Opportunity, State Government

Get immediate relief for your rural business from the Rural Housing, Utilities, and Business-Cooperative Service

  • Who’s eligible: Rural businesses
  • What it is: The USDA Rural Development is waiving or deferring specific fees, deadlines, loan payments and more to support the rural community. 
  • Take action: Learn what the USDA Rural Development is doing to provide immediate support and relief for rural businesses.  
  • From: USDA Rural Development, Federal Government

Get free assistance from a network of financial professionals

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses
  • What it is: Lew’s List in partnership with High Plains Advisors and Foundry Group have assembled a group of CFOs, controllers, and other senior finance professionals to help businesses survive the COVID-19 crisis. This is a free financial assistance network.
  • Take action: To learn more about the resource network, read this blog post. Then, request free financial assistance.
  • From: Lew’s List, High Plains Advisors, and Foundry Group

Get grants and resources for your nonprofit from the Yampa Valley Community Foundation

  • Who’s eligible: Nonprofits organizations in the Yampa Valley Region that work closely with the community and have strong experience working with the disproportionately affected communities
  • What it is: Yampa Valley Community Foundation’s is providing grants and resources to organizations in the region who meet the eligibility requirements through its COVID-19 Response Fund.
  • Take action: Read more about the COVID-19 Response Fund and request funding.
  • From: Yampa Valley Community Foundation

Financial assistance for small businesses owned by women, people of color, and immigrants

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses owned by women, people of color, and immigrants.
  • What it is: Opportunity Fund’s Small Business Relief Fund can provide you with immediate relief if you’re a struggling self-employed, small business owner. The fund aims to provide loan payment relief, affordable capital, and expert advice for businesses owned by women, people of color, and immigrants. 
  • Take action: Get in touch with the Opportunity Fund to request assistance. 
  • From: Opportunity Fund

COVID-19 Business for All Grant for up to $50,000

  • Who’s eligible: Entrepreneurs and small business owners in the U.S.
  • What it is: Fifteen Business for All Grants, ranging from $10,000 to $50,000, will be awarded to small businesses that need support to scale. At least 11 of the 15 available grants will go to women, people of color, LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs, military-connected business owners, and entrepreneurs with disabilities.
  • Take action: Learn more about the eligibility and application process.
  • From: Alice and Verizon

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and the Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund $10,000 grant

  • Who’s eligible: Entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses, and other enterprises in historically underserved communities that are facing immediate financial pressure due to COVID-19
  • What it is: Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is providing $10,000 grants based on availability and eligibility. The grant can be used for rent, payroll, debt to vendors, and other operational costs.  
  • Take action: Learn how to register for an application.
  • From: Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and Verizon

NextFifty one-time grant to cover 17% of your nonprofit’s operating budget

  • Who’s eligible: Nonprofit entities based in Colorado primarily serving adults 50 and older.
  • What it is: NextFifty Initiative is providing a one-time, immediate general operating support grant. The grant amount can cover up to 17% of your organization’s operating budget, for a maximum of $25,000.
  • Take action: Read more about eligibility and apply for the NextFifty one-time grant
  • From: NextFifty Initiative

Set up a Mainvest crowdfunding initiative and apply for a $2,000 loan

  • Who’s eligible: Brick and mortar stores like restaurants, breweries, cafes, yoga studios, and boutiques, that set up a crowdfunding initiative on Mainvest
  • What it is: If you have an existing brick and mortar business that has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and you launch a capital raise on Mainvest, you may be eligible to immediately receive a $2,000 zero-interest, 120-day loan.
  • Take action: Read more about the Mainvest crowdfunding initiative. Then, set up an account on Mainvest’s website and you’ll automatically become an applicant for the Main Street Initiative loan.
  • From: Mainvest

Get free Yelp advertising and services

  • Who’s eligible: Primarily independent local restaurant and nightlife businesses that are open.
  • What it is: Yelp is waiving advertising fees, and providing free advertising, products, and services during the COVID-19 outbreak. Yelp’s relief support is largely focused on independent local restaurants and nightlife businesses, but they’re also supporting other local businesses. 
  • Learn more: Learn more about Yelp’s COVID-19 response and find more info about relief for restaurants and nightlife
  • From: Yelp

Learn the differences between CARES Act assistance programs, get details on how to apply, and read FAQs

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses
  • What it is: The Colorado Small Business Development Center website has detailed information to help you understand frequently asked questions about the CAREs Act, apply for disaster loans, navigate insurance, understand economic loss estimators, defer payroll taxes, and more. 
  • Take action: Browse the COVID-19 small business response resources.
  • From: Colorado Small Business Development Center, State Government

Learn which sections of the CARES Act are most relevant to entrepreneurs and small businesses

  • Who’s eligible: Entrepreneurs, small businesses, and new businesses
  • What it is: The Center for American Entrepreneurship has put together a list of the sections of the CARES Act that are most relevant for small- and medium-sized businesses, and new and young businesses.
  • Learn more: Learn about the relevant sections of the law and read the center’s summaries of key information.  
  • From: Center for American Entrepreneurship

CDC guidance on managing your business and responding to COVID-19

  • Who’s eligible: Businesses and employers
  • What it is: The CDC has put together guidance for you to prepare your business for exposure, transmission among your employees, and how to maintain healthy business operations and work environment. 
  • Take action: Get specific information and guidance on how to decrease the spread of COVID-19 and lower the impact to your business with the CDC’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employer.
  • From: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Federal Government

OSHA guidance on reducing the impact of COVID-19 for COVID-19

Department of Labor guidance on managing your workforce during COVID-19

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses
  • What it is: Stay up-to-date on the latest workforce information for employers, including info on paid sick leave, workplace preparedness, workforce reduction alternatives, employee assistance, and more.
  • Take action: Check out the Department of Labor and Employment’s resources and FAQs
  • From: Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, State Government

The latest CDC public health information on COVID-19 in the United States

  • Who’s eligible: Anyone
  • What is it: The CDC has updated public health information and guidance including how to protect yourself, what to do if you feel sick, and how the case data in the United States is developing.
  • Take action: Learn the latest health, safety, and US case data on the CDC’s COVID-19 site.
  • From: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Federal Government

The latest Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment information on COVID-19 in Colorado

Chamber of Commerce resources to help you manage your business during COVID-19

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses
  • What it is: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has compiled a coronavirus guide to help you find resources and guidance to help your small business survive the COVID-19 impact. 
  • Take action: Browse the resources in the Coronavirus Small Business Guide.
  • From: U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Federal Government

Local mentoring and training from the U.S. SBA Local Assistance program

  • Who’s eligible: Entrepreneurs and small businesses
  • What it is: Search for local support for your small business with the U.S. Small Business Administration Local Assistance program. To help your small business, you can connect with local partners to receive different kinds of training and counseling services. 
  • Take action: Search for local assistance
  • From: U.S. Small Business Administration, Federal Government

Sign up for free consulting and low-cost training from the CO Small Business Development Center Network

Talk to someone from the Small Business Navigator team for info on assistance programs and training

Choose Colorado resources for businesses during COVID-19

  • Who’s eligible: Entrepreneurs, small businesses, rural businesses
  • What it is: The Colorado COVID-19 Business Resource Center compiles the latest state and federal updates that impact businesses, including economic-related COVID-19 announcements, support programs, public health information, and email updates to the business community.
  • Take action: Read the information in the Business Resource Center. Check back frequently, as content is updated regularly.
  • From: Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT), State Government.

Set up free curbside pickup for your restaurant with AppIt

  • Who’s eligible: Restaurants
  • What it is: Set up curbside pickup scheduling with AppIt’s Curbside online ordering tool. The service is free to use and you keep all generated revenue.
  • Take action: Set up an AppIt account.
  • From: AppIt Ventures

Sell gift cards online for your small business

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses
  • What it is: List your small business on independent websites to sell gift cards online to keep revenue coming in during closures or limited services.
  • Take action: Learn more about the sites and sign up to be included:

Financial assistance from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Services

  • Who’s eligible: Agriculturalists and food producers
  • What it is: 
    • Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG): Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is providing economic relief through its CIG program. These grants are meant to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. 
    • Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP): NRCS’s CSP helps you build on your existing conservation efforts while strengthening your operation. Apply by May 29, 2020. 
    • Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP): Through NRCS’s EQIP, you could receive financial and technical assistance to implement structural and management conservation practices that optimize environmental benefits on working agricultural land.
  • Take action: Read more info and find contact details on the NRCS website
  • From: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Services, Federal Government

Facebook Small Business Grant program

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses in Denver, currently
  • What it is: Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses. 
  • Learn more: Sign up to learn more details about the Small Business Grant program
  • From: Facebook

$4,000 grant from the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE)

  • Who’s eligible: Members of NASE in good standing for 3-months prior to submitting an application.
  • What it is: NASE is offering up to a $4,000 grant for your small business from the Growth Grants program. Grants can be used for marketing, advertising, hiring employees, expanding facilities and other specific business needs.
  • Learn more: Read more about the eligibility requirements and apply for a Growth Grant.
  • From: National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE)

Sign up for Schedulicity and apply for a $500 grant

  • Who’s eligible: Service-based businesses who are Schedulicity members, Schedulicity is currently offering free memberships.
  • What it is: Schedulicity is giving away $500 grants three times a week to their members in need through their #SchedulicityCares program. You can re-enter once per week. 
  • Learn more: Sign up for Schedulicity, share a post on Instagram, and submit it. Learn more about the Schedulicity grant guidelines.
  • From: Schedulicity

$200 grant from the Arts and Culture Leaders of Color Emergency Fund

  • Who’s eligible: Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) who are pursuing careers as artists or arts administrators whose income has been directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • What it is: Arts Administrators of Color Network has set up the Arts Leaders of Color Emergency Fund to support BIPOC artists and administrators, such as consultants, box office staff, and seasonal employees. 
  • Learn more: Apply for the $200 grant.
  • From: Arts Administrators of Color Network

Greenline Emergency Microloan, ranging from $5,000 to $50,000

  • Who’s eligible:
    • Be located in communities throughout the western slope of Colorado (emphasis on Grand Junction)
    • Show evidence of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their business operations
    • Have 50 or fewer full-time employees
  • What it is: To enable disadvantaged small businesses to continue operations and retain employees, Greenline Ventures LLC has established the Greenline Emergency Microloan Program to provide loans that can be used to support working capital and business continuity.
  • Learn more: Read more about the loan terms and application process. Then fill out an application.
  • From: Greenline Ventures LLC

COVID-19 relief funds for Colorado nonprofits

CARES Act loan FAQs for 501(c)(3) nonprofits

Find job candidates and job openings throughout Colorado

Unemployment resources, retraining programs, and job search best practices’s COVID-19 business survival guide

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses, entrepreneurs, nonprofits
  • What is it: Inc.’s put together a list of resources, tools, and guidelines for navigating your business and workforce during COVID-19. The resources cover topics such as cash flow, staffing, leadership, and managing debt.
  • Take action: Browse the list of resources.
  • From: Inc. Magazine

Unemployment payment for independent contractors and gig workers

  • Who’s eligible: Independent contractors, gig workers, and others who are unemployed at no fault of their own. Learn more about qualifying for benefits.
  • What it is: For the first time, independent contractors and gig workers qualify for unemployment payments from the government along with other individuals who have been laid off. 
  • Take action: Apply and follow every step through the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. Stay up to date with your application and how Colorado’s unemployment relief may change because of COVID-19.
  • From: U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Federal Government

Articles about small businesses’ response to COVID-19

Use the Colorado OEDIT’s financial assistance list to find loans, grants, and more

  • Who’s eligible: Small businesses, rural businesses, and entrepreneurs
  • What it is: The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) has put together and maintains a list of financial assistance opportunities for Colorado businesses. The list is meant to help small businesses find access to alternative funding sources beyond EIDL, PPP, and other federal loans and programs.
  • Learn more: Browse the financial assistance list. Check back frequently, as content is updated regularly.
  • From: The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT)

Mental Health Crisis Help

If you’re in extreme emotional distress or thinking of ending your own life, please call 911 or contact:

  • Colorado Crisis Services Hotline: 1-844-493-TALK (8255) or via text by texting TALK to 38255 or find a walk-in center on their website

Find support groups

Group therapy or support groups can help guide you with a community of support and trust. Participants can bond over share experiences and help each other develop healthy tools for coping. During these isolating times, it can be a beneficial source of connection.

Connect with mental health professionals to get support

Therapy and coaching can help provide you with the tools you need to better support yourself, your business, and your family. We are dedicated to providing diverse therapy and coaching options so you can choose what help you need most right now.

  • Energize Colorado Stress Management for Small Businesses: Offering free group courses focused o giving you techniques to better meet all of life’s challenges.
  • Energize Colorado Therapy Connection: We’ve brought together mental health professionals to offer free and low-cost therapy, in an effort to make sure that anyone who needs support is able to access it.
  • Coronavirus Online Therapy: Free and low fee online therapy for front line and essential workers
  • Sondermind: Free help finding a therapist who fits your needs, accepts your insurance, and is available to see you in person or via video sessions
  • Open Path Psychotherapy Collective: Online psychotherapy sessions between $30 and $60 after a lifetime membership fee of $59, as long as there’s financial need.
  • Talkspace: Therapy via messaging
  • Better Help: Therapy via video conferencing and messaging

If you’re a licensed mental health professional looking to provide free or low-cost sessions, please fill out this short form and we’ll reach out soon to learn more and discuss details.

Educational resources to help you and your employees stay well

We have compiled resources that can help you and your employees learn about and practice mental health daily. Implementing daily practices to improve your mental health and help with trouble sleeping, and symptoms of depression, anxiety, and chronic pain.


View mental health professionals by region

We’ve compiled a list of mental health professionals and practices in Colorado, so you can view available resources near you.


Apply for a $500 micro investment from the Doonie Fund.

  • Who’s eligible: Black women entrepreneurs
  • What it is: The Doonie Fund makes micro investments of $500 in Black women entrepreneurs. Since its inception on April 5, 2020, the fund has invested in over 500 black women entrepreneurs.
  • Take action: Learn more about the fund and apply on its website.
  • From: digitalundivided

Apply for investment funding from SheEO

  • Who’s eligible: Majority women-owned businesses and entrepreneurs who will exceed $50K in revenue but the time you apply.
  • What it is: SheEO provides a 0%-interest loan with a five-year term for each Venture. Ventures pay back their loans in 20 equal installments over a five-year period. As the funds are paid back, the money gets reinvested into the fund and loaned out again to new Ventures.
  • Take action: Learn more and apply through the SheEO website.
  • From: SheEO

Request legal assistance from the Colorado COVID Small Business Legal Program

Lowe’s Small Business Grant Program

Who’s eligible: US-Based Small Businesses – with a focus on underserved communities that often lack access to flexible, affordable capital.
What it is: Grants of $20,000 to small business owners to help meet their most immediate needs. Lowe’s increased its minority grant program by $5 million to $30 million and focused an additional $25 million donation on rural, hard-hit communities nationwide.
Take action: Learn more here
From: Lowe’s & Local Initiatives Support Corporation

eBay Up & Running Grants

Who’s eligible: Existing eBay sellers and new eBay business sellers who have joined the platform prior to October 31, 2020
What it is: Grant packages of $10,000, including cash, eBay credits, coaching through eBay Seller School, and more. eBay is awarding more than $500,000 in grants and education resources to help small businesses stay up and running online and secure their future into 2021 and beyond. 
Deadline: December 11, 2020, at midnight ET
Take actionLearn more here
From: eBay

OEDIT – Small Business Alternative Funding List

What it is: List of many available sources of funding including both grants and loans for Colorado-based small businesses.
Take action: Access the list here
From: Office of Economic Development & International Trade

Philanthropy Colorado Resources List

What it is:  List of many available financial resources including both grants and loans.
Take action: Access the list here
From: Philanthropy Colorado

$5,000 Subsidy for New Hires

From the City & County of Denver:

“No matter the size of your business, you may be eligible for a training subsidy—a great way for you to save time and money on recruitment. 

We offer a 50% reimbursement of wages up to $5,000 to employers who hire qualified workers to train in new career opportunities. New employees gain valuable work experience, increase their skills, and secure long-term employment. “

Learn More Below

• 50% of paid wages reimbursed, up to $5,000 
• Pre-screened candidates that closely meet the requirements of your available position 
• You make the final hiring decision on every pre-screened applicant 

• You create a new, full-time position to work at least 32 hours per week 
• Your firm has been operating in Colorado for at least 120 days 
• Your firm is current on workers compensation and unemployment insurance payments 
• You agree to help increase the skill set and growth opportunities of your new employee 
• The new position earns wages at the appropriate current industry standard 
• You agree to retain the employee following the placement/training period, provided that the employee successfully completes the training and maintains your firm’s other employment requirements 

Paycheck Protection Program 2021

With the new $284 billion Congressional appropriation for small business relief, the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) reopenedthe week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. Find up-to-date information and resources accessible here, provided via Colorado’s Office of Economic Development & International Trade.

Energize Colorado Gap Fund

The Gap Fund distributed more than $26 million in government funded grants during 2020 and is now moving into the loan phase, offering low interest loans to sole proprietors, businesses and nonprofits with less than 25 full-time employees. For more information on the Gap Fund Impact to date can be found here.

Visit the Gap Fund home page for updates on future funding and loan distribution.

Digital Innovation

Energize Colorado and Mastercard are partnering to bring small businesses resources and education to help them digitally transform and open their Digital Doors.

Learn more.

Updated 04.24.20

Check back for frequent updates and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter.

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