Lisa Ducharme, Retired, USAF
Executive Director, New England Veterans Chamber of Commerce
Businesses Helping Businesses During COVID-19
April 7, 2020 (Viz Release) – – When the terrorist attacks happened on 9/11/2001, I was at the Pentagon. By the time I left the Pentagon on 9/12 our world had changed. The aftershock saw people coming together in ways we could not have imagined. Personal and business relationships were changed forever.
Today we are under attack from a virus that knows no boundaries. Again, organizations and businesses around the world are stepping up to support one another.
Similarly, to 9/11 this pandemic is taking its toll on us emotionally. The uncertainty of our immediate future, and the changes to our everyday life is making us feel vulnerable. Additionally, many are facing financial challenges that daily are growing to feel insurmountable.
In a recent State of the Veteran and Military Spouse Small Business Survey by The Rosie Network, 89% of businesses have an annual revenue of less than $250k, 10% are facing imminent closure, 46% want to seek help, but don’t know how, and 35% have no financial cash flow projection.
The New England Veterans Chamber of Commerce is doing daily question and answer sessions for our veteran, military and family member businesses via zoom, Monday – Friday 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST until further notice our goal is to provide the resources our businesses need https://nevcc.org/meetings/. We are putting the most commonly asked questions on our coronavirus page along with other resources https://nevcc.org/coronavirus-covid-19-information/
One way we can help ourselves is to connect to the reality of our financials and work through ways to continue in the short term and make plans for the long-term.
Fred Parrish, www.theprofitbeacon.com creator of The Profit Beacon software and co-author of The E-Myth CFO: Why Most Small Businesses Run Out of Money and What to Do About It has graciously offered our veteran and civilian businesses a 90-day free subscription program that will help people organize their financials. (code: 90dayfreev)
This program will allow you to forecast your cash flow for the next 24 months and provide detailed information for your review. The program uses uploaded QuickBooks data (if you are a veteran you can get a 1 year subscription at a great price go to https://shop.id.me/stores/2215-quickbooks)
While many folks are coming forward to offer programs, I am familiar with this one and suggest that you give it a try, the last day to sign up for the 90-day free subscription is April 30, 2020.
We will get through this together but need to continue to work on our businesses, even if closed. This is one way to come out of this time at home with greater mastery over your financial future.
We cannot control the spread of this virus and the devastating health impact on the world, we can control how we spend this time to prepare ourselves for our reopening once it safe again. Our families, employees and communities are depending on our small businesses to come back strong, when the time is ready.
Below are some additional resources to help you strengthen your business planning
SBA Disaster Assistance
General Information: https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources. Small business owners may apply online in the Disaster Loan Application Portal at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. For program questions or assistance in completing the application, please contact the Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
SBDC’s offer one on one assistance, and currently are still assisting customers.
The Rosie Network
The Rosie Network is a list of Military Family-Owned businesses throughout the United States. Rosie’s List has launched its online eCommerce platform – the Marketplace https://rosieslist.org/ecwid-cart.php For those businesses who need a place to sell some their product online.
Veteran Business Project
Promotes military, veterans, and spouses small business ownership opportunities. We do this by proudly offering our unique “vharmony” business match-making service, connecting veterans/spouses seeking to acquire established businesses with business owners wanting to divest. https://veteranbusinessproject.org/
Veteran Business Outreach Centers
Provide entrepreneurial development services such as business training, counseling and resource partner referrals to transitioning service members, veterans, National Guard & Reserve members and military spouses interested in starting or growing a small business.
United States Chamber of Commerce
The U.S. Chamber is working closely with the White House, U.S. government agencies, and foreign government officials to inform and equip businesses with the most important and up-to-date information to prevent the spread of the virus and prepare businesses for the near and long-term impact https://www.uschamber.com/coronavirus
Veterans Chamber of Commerce
The United States Veterans Chamber of Commerce, https://usvcc.org there are over 40 Veterans Chamber of Commerce’s throughout the United States. In New England, we have the NEVCC is doing daily question and answer sessions via zoom, https://nevcc.org/meetings/ and we are putting the most commonly asked questions on our coronavirus page https://nevcc.org/coronavirus-covid-19-information/
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC)
During this time many are facing serious financial challenges, there is help. They offer a variety of services to assist you, including Budget Counseling, Housing Counseling (HUD and Reverse Mortgage), Bankruptcy Counseling, Financial Education, and Debt Management.
Through PATRIOTlink users can search vetted, direct, cost-free services specific to their needs.
The Science of Well-Being
Free Online Training Class from Yale University. The Science of Well Being” highlights research that reveals misconceptions about what makes us happy — and the concrete steps we can take to live a more fulfilling life.
If you are a veteran or military and have a caregiver, please have your caregiver join Hidden Heroes, they are here to help. https://hiddenheroes.org/
We are in this together, and we will make it through this together!