Emergency fund established to help small business owners in Lancaster


LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) – Lancaster, like many other cities, is seeing some of its small businesses crumble under the pressure of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We’re being asked and told by the state, you’re mandated to shut your doors which means little or no income for a lot of business,” says Anne Kirby, founder of the Candy Factory, a co-working space. “Then you’re still supposed to pay all of your bills on top of that and that’s very challenging.”

Kirby said that a recent survey among small business owners in Lancaster found that 81% of them don’t have enough cash to survive three months.

Now there is a fund to help.

“The small business community is the lifeblood of our communities,” she said. “We generate jobs, we are innovative, we are what makes our communities interesting and fun and unique, and we need to make sure we’re suring them up.”

Kirby helped to create Encourage Lancaster, which has established an emergency fund for businesses that can’t wait for government help.

“Loans can’t just be the option for small business,” Kirby said. “It has to be a combination of grants and loans and other support services.”

Kirby said the fund will eventually be divided up to small business owners.

“We need to make sure we’re providing the services these businesses need to not only get through the time while we’re shut down but the ramp-up which is going to take a while,” she said.

You can donate to the fund by clicking here.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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