In the United States, women-owned enterprises are starting to make big progress. Despite accounting for far less than 20 percent of all companies in the United States in 2018, their figures are constantly rising.

Based on the National Women’s Business Council, women represented, owned, and managed 37.6 percent of American enterprises as of 2021. The same is also true for minority-owned enterprises, especially those operated by black business owners, which increased by 8 percent between 2018 and 2019.

In 2021, black women controlled 1.6 million enterprises in the United States, accounting for 13.7 percent of all women-owned enterprises. Although this is relatively better than those operated by Asian women, it is substantially lower than those controlled by Hispanic and white women.

A widespread problem referred to as “the double gap” affects black women. Aside from the known fact that they earn less than their white and black male counterparts, they also earn less than white women. WomensNet established the Amber Grant in 1998.

The Amber Grant was established to commemorate the life of Amber Wigdahl and it was among the first online organizations to provide grants to women-owned businesses. Amber was a special young woman who passed away at the age of 19 before achieving her entrepreneurial goals.

They continued her legacy by awarding a $10,000 grant to a female business owner every month, as well as a supplementary annual $25,000 grant to any of the previous 12 monthly Amber Grant winners. All year round, WomensNet provides a number of business grants to women.

To be eligible for each of these grants, you must only apply for the Amber Grant ONCE. You would then be assessed for all grants for which you are qualified.

Different Types of Amber Grants for Black Businesses in 2022

Across the year, WomensNet finances numerous women’s businesses with grants totaling $450,000. You are only required to submit one proposal to be considered for all these grants. Various Amber Grants available include;

  1. Monthly Amber Grant – $10,000 winner every month

Every month, WomensNet judges assess all requests and choose five top candidates. One of those top contenders will receive the $10,000 Amber Grant. The remaining four contestants will receive $1,000. The $10,000 Amber Grant winner each month is eligible for the $25,000 year-end grant.

  1. Annual Amber Grant – $25,000 for two winners per year

At the end of each year, WomensNet awards two independent $25,000 grants to women-owned businesses. The first $25,000 grant is awarded to just about any previous $10,000 monthly Amber Grant recipients. The remaining $25,000 grant is available to any previous $10,000 monthly Business Category Grant winners.

  1. The Marketing Grant – Two winners are chosen each year

WomensNet provides “hands-on” marketing assistance to a picked women-owned organization twice a year. It includes key meetings with the following people:

  • An expert agency that offers assistance in designing and delivering a marketing plan
  • Associates of the WomensNet Advisory Board and other “friends of WomensNet.”
  1. The Non-Profit Grant – $10,000 winner each quarter

A non-profit company or organization receives $10,000 every quarter. Women are known to make up approximately 75 percent of the workers in non-profit organizations. Nonetheless, this particular grant is for you if you intend to utilize your non-profit to offer a service or an item to your community.

  1. Business Category Grants – $10,000 winner each month

Almost any woman business owner who applies for the $10,000 Amber Grant is able to qualify (for the month in which the application is submitted). However, WomensNet has a supplementary $10,000 Business Category grant winner each month.

WomensNet recognizes that certain business groups are under-represented in grant funding. As a result, candidates who fall into these key business groups are instantaneously able to qualify for the monthly $10,000 Business Category Grant (once per year).

Your Category grant proposal will stay operational until the month of your category. One of the twelve category winners will receive a $25,000 year-end grant.

  1. Mini Grants – Up to $2,000

Each participant of the WomensNet Advisory Board has the opportunity to apply for “Mini-Grants” (up to $2,000) all year long. WomensNet occasionally locates women business owners who seem to have a fairly small — but still significant — grant requirement. For 2022, the Mini-Grant fund pool is $48,000.

Eligibility Requirements for Amber Grants in 2022

To be eligible for Amber Grants in 2022, here are the requirements you will be expected to meet;

  • Businesses must be at least 50 percent owned by women.
  • The company must be premised in either the United States or Canada.
  • The applicant should be at least 18 years old.
  • There is a $15 application fee.

How to Apply for Amber Grants in 2022

  • Check for program deadline
  • Apply as early as possible
  • Make sure you are a female-business owner
  • Check that you can provide needed documentation
  • Keep your application records

Indeed the application procedure for Amber Grants is pretty straightforward. You’ll complete a short form on the Amber Grant website, letting the organization know the basics regarding your business concept as well as how you intend to utilize your grant fund.

Please keep in mind that there is a $15 application fee. WomensNet will forward an email confirmation immediately after your application has been received. This email includes take-in information as well as a link to their preferential marketing manual. If you haven’t received the email within a few days, check your spam folder.

Conclusion

Given the numerous small business grants for black women currently available, deciding which ones to seek can be complicated. The Amber Grant Foundation, much like NASE Growth Grant, awards monthly grants of up to $10,000 to assist female business owners.

Although this grant is not limited to black business owners, the Amber Grant has a vested interest in protecting small, women- and minority-owned enterprises. AfricanAmericanGrants.org is committed to helping bridge the business opportunity gap by providing Black-business owners funding opportunities, and other resources to help grow their businesses.

This is where many governmental and non-governmental agencies such as SoGal Grant, GirlBoss Foundation and the Amber Foundation, come in to help provide some form of succour for businesses in the form of business grants, business tools, and business development resources to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.