How the ‘We Care RVA Rebuild Project’ has helped small businesses

How the ‘We Care RVA Rebuild Project’ has helped small businesses

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - More small businesses in Richmond have a fighting chance to survive the pandemic because of grants through the “We Care RVA Rebuild Project.”

More than a million dollars have been doled out to small business owners so far in the city.

BareSOUL Yoga in Richmond was able to secure some of the funding. Not only does it provide stability to its clients, but because of those grants the business also now has stability and peace.

“The biggest thing that we were trying to figure out is ‘how are we just going to operate?’” said founder, Ashley Williams.

Prior to the pandemic, BareSOUL was holding sessions in schools and other venues, but after COVID-19 hit, they went virtual.

“We needed equipment, or computers, or quicker wi-fi, or operating systems. My first question was ‘how are we going to support it?’” Williams said.

That’s where We Care RVA Rebuild came in. The Metropolitan Business League introduced the program this summer; small businesses could apply for $2,500 to $10,000 grants, which certainly helped small businesses like Elite Cleaners on West Main Street in keeping the lights on.

“We’re not out of the woods yet, but I do see some good, positive things happening in the future,” said owner, Grant Kim. “My wife and I are just so thankful and we appreciate all the help and all the support we’re getting.”

As for BareSOUL, Williams says the business is now able to evolve.

“More networking with businesses, graphic design to graphic development to videography. We are definitely expanding and meeting more of a need right now, and we’ve also got the tools to do it,” she added.

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