Main Street Business Relief Fund

for Arlington, Dorset, and Manchester

 

What We Fund

The fund is designed to help businesses with revenues under $1 million in Arlington, East Arlington, Dorset, East Dorset, Manchester, and Manchester Center that are in distress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Under U.S. Internal Revenue Service rules, businesses qualify for charitable grants if they demonstrate financial stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that they have no reasonable access to resources to mitigate the impact of the disaster, and the decline or closure of the business will contribute to “community deterioration.” 

Priority will be given to sectors whose business closures would most significantly lead to the deterioration of the vitality and character of the town in which they are located, notably:

  • Food (i.e. restaurants, coffee shops, bars, farms)
  • Lodging (i.e. inns, hotels, rentals)
  • Retail shops
  • Personal care, outdoor recreation, fitness, and wellness (i.e. hair salons, yoga, massage therapists, chiropractors, dentists, outdoor guides)
  • Pet care
  • Landscaping and home care
  • Art Galleries, artisans, and fine crafts
  • Local publications

What We Don't Fund

We do not expect to support, and discourage applications from, businesses in the following sectors:

  • Financial, legal, and professional services
  • Business-to-business and marketing
  • Manufacturing
  • Real estate management, associations, and development
  • Fuel and utility
  • Construction and renovation
  • Medical (i.e. hospitals, medical practices)
  • Franchises, chains, or statewide corporations

Grant Size

The fund will award grants of about $4,000 to $25,000 to approximately 100 businesses. 

The size of grants will be based on the relative size of the business, the level of the business’s COVID-19-related financial distress, the importance of the business to their town’s vibrancy, and available funding.

Who May Apply

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, sex, gender identity (as defined in paragraph 249(c)(4) of title 18, United States Code), sexual orientation, marital or parental status, political affiliation, military service, physical or mental ability be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity funded in whole or in part with funds made available (meaning any funds having a competitive application process) by the Vermont Community Foundation, and any other program or activity funded in whole or in part with funds appropriated for grants, cooperative agreements, and other assistance administered by the Foundation. 

Grant applicants must provide services and have employment policies and practices without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, gender identity (as defined in paragraph 249(c)(4) of title 18, United States Code), sexual orientation, marital or parental status, political affiliation, military service, physical or mental ability.

Deadline and Notification

Applications must be submitted electronically by 5:00 p.m. on Monday June 29, 2020 using the link below. **This is a new extended deadline. No applications will be accepted after June 29th.

Applicants will be notified of the results of their application by mid-July.

Application Process

Please use the links below to access the Application Narrative Statement and Financial Profile.

Please click the "Apply For a Grant" button below to upload the five documents listed via secure email to The Bank of Bennington. For your protection, it is important to use this secure link only; do not send this information to the Vermont Community Foundation. All five documents must be included for the application to be considered complete and to be eligible for funding.  

  • Narrative Statement, including business profile and responses to eligibility and application questions
  • Financial Profile, including Personal Financial Statement of Principal
  • The first four pages of your 2019 Federal Business Tax Return (preferred). If not available, internally prepared year end statements.
  • Your Profit and Loss statements for January through May 2020 with a comparison for the same period in 2019
  • Current Balance Sheet

Note: The Vermont Community Foundation is partnering with the Bank of Bennington to verify applicant business’s statements of financial need and available resources.  The Vermont Community Foundation will make all final grant eligibility and award decisions.

Please note that the Vermont Community Foundation and the Bank of Bennington are observing health guidelines and state policies for limited staffing at facilities, social distancing and remote work.  We encourage applicants to read instructions carefully, submit complete applications, and limit inquiries to the Community Foundation to the most pressing problems.  For pressing matter, please contact Elisabeth Marx at emarx@vermontcf.org.

Apply for a Grant