Providing help to small businesses in their time of need

Fulfilling her dream of owning her own business hasn't been easy for Pamela Thompson. 

"It’s been a long road, I would say. A lot of blood, sweat, and tears from legal contracts, working with contractors, getting funding for my business." 

Pamela started her business My Shade and Texture in January. The business was doing fine until the pandemic hit and she had to close her doors.

"It went from hosting in-store events, having customers here every day. We have a salon on-site, to now closing the salon moving things online and offering curbside service." 

Pamela says she applied to a lot of business loan programs but none could help her until she found out about the Tampa Bay Women's Business Centre Grant.

"Most people need help with revenues and the Women's Centre is in a unique position to help people with that," said Bradley Stevenson, the Women's Centre finance manager.
The $420,000 grant was given to the Women's Centre by the U.S. Small Business Administration to help small businesses navigate through the pitfalls of COVID-19.

"The grant is helping women of the community small business owners with one-on-one counseling, which we provide for free," Bradley said.  

It’s help that Pamela is glad to receive. 

"Less than two months being connected with the women's business center, it has really turned my business around 180 as far as thinking I had no options, but now having options through my city."

Pamela meets with her coach every week and also attend webinars hosted by the Women's Business Centre. The program has helped more than 100 businesses in two months. 

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