YWCA Tulsa is launching a new grant called the “Carmela Hill Legacy Fund” for women entrepreneurs within the Tulsa community who need a little help getting their idea off the ground. The applications will be open to any woman with a business or just an idea.
The applications will open in the fall and any Tulsa woman is eligible to apply. Their page can be found HERE.
The fund will consist of up to $50,000 to be used each year on various ideas presented by the women who apply. The interest-free loan can range anywhere from $2,000-$5,000 per person and is interest-free for 18 months. The program will not only just give the women the money, but will also provide classes with other local women entrepreneurs who can share tips on how to be successful.
The decision board and Carmela Hill are looking for women who have poor or no credit, are seeking a loan too small for the bank to consider, have no cash or other sources of equity, or do not want to accrue credit card debt.
Fund Creator Carmela Hill said she is thrilled to help women thrive.
“If you have an idea or anything and don’t know how to get it off the ground or get started come to us we will help you get it funded and started running in a successful way,” Hill said.
Tylisha Oliver-Thompson owns “Simply Delish Café and Catering” in Broken Arrow. She said she plans on applying because she wants to grow her business and her efforts within the community.
“Having the grant as a female would mean so very much because it solidifies that we as women can do excellent things and it would catapult me into being able to do more for the community,” Oliver-Thompson said.
She told News On 6 that it was difficult to get her business up and running.
“I for the longest time didn’t let people know I was a girl when I was branding my business, Oliver-Thompson said.
The 2019 State of Women-Owned Business Report shows that women own 42% of all businesses but Oliver-Thompson said the business field still seems to be a man’s world.
“It’s a little more difficult and challenging as a woman to get your name out there and be seen as running with the big dogs,” Oliver-Thompson said.
This is where the YWCA’s Carmela Hill Legacy Fund comes in, the Hill said they want to help Tulsa women like Oliver-Thompson launch and grow their goals
“I think it’s important for women to be visible,” Hill said. ”Sometimes you time your talent your treasure aren’t visible and that’s why people don’t know what services are out there.”
Oliver-Thompson is a former foster parent and adoptive mother of all girls so she said it’s important to teach them they can do and be anything.
“Letting them see their mother in a light where they can do anything just like they see their mom doing is remarkable and thing,” She said.
That fund application isn’t open quite yet but you can go to ywcatulsa.org to find out if you are eligible to apply in the fall.
Originally Appeared Here