May is Small Business Month: New resources, funding available to offset revenue loss during COVID-19 pandemic

Karolina’s Antiques, like many others, have had to get creative to stay afloat

SAN ANTONIO – May is Small Business Month and small businesses both around the country and around San Antonio have had unique obstacles over the last year.

“We had to learn how to survive and how to, I guess, kind of modernize; and how to keep the business going and flowing, which was out of our comfort zone,” Uriel Diaz, of Karolina’s Antiques said.

Uriel Diaz and his family own and operate Karolina’s Antiques.

“We were an antique store that has grown into something more. We love to work with local artists. We love to put our culture into everything we do. So now I say we’re antiques and gifts and just like San Antonio, overall,” Diaz said.

The designs, creations and customizations are unique and amazing, but it was because of a specific strategy that Karolina’s Antiques has been able to thrive.

“If you don’t have, you know, Instagram or Facebook and you have a small business, do you need to do it? You have to. It’s just like such an important part now of owning a small business,” Diaz said.

Small businesses worldwide have had a difficult year, but there are resources now available.

“We have been able to lucky enough to have been able to get one of the grants and then we’re hoping to be able to get another one,” Diaz said.

New opportunities and resources are available because of the American Rescue Plan Act. The act offers funding to businesses that suffered revenue loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) began registration on Friday and has opened applications on Monday. The Restaurant Revitalization Program is available to restaurants, bars, and other similar places of business that serve food or drink.

During an initial 21-day priority period, the SBA said they will be accepting applications from all eligible applicants and only applications from small businesses owned by women, veterans, and socially and economically disadvantaged applicants will be funded during this period. Then, on Day 22, all eligible applications will be processed and funded until program funds are exhausted.

Want to apply for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund? Here’s how:

  • Apply directly through the SBA Platform at www.restaurants.sba.gov.
  • Through a Point-of-Sale Vendor (SBA is currently only working with Square, clover, aloha and toast.)
  • Through the telephone at (844) 279-8898 (Telephonic applications will have longer processing times.)

Another form of funding is the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan, which provides economic relief to small businesses and nonprofit organizations currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue.

EIDLs can be used to pay fixed debts, payroll and expenses, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact, SBA said. Economic Injury Disaster loans remain available through December 31, 2021, or until funding is exhausted. Applicants can apply on SBA’s website by clicking here.

And lastly, there’s the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP.

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll. Businesses must go through a PPP participating lender to apply before the deadline on May 31.

You can find learn more by clicking here.

As for the Diaz family, their doors are open and they are ready for what comes next.

" We’re hoping that events we start doing events again. We miss them so much. And now that people are doing open air events and we’re all vaccinated. We’re hoping that we can start doing those again,” Diaz said.


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