NRV Resiliency Grant program benefits 76 small businesses

New River Valley News

GILES COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — In October 2020, still the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, a group of New River Valley tourism directors came together to provide a local approach to help their small businesses.

“We knew that the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development was going to be offering recovery assistance grant programs,” said Cora Gnegy, Giles County Tourism Marketing Director.

After a competitive process, the counties of Floyd, Montgomery, Pulaski, and Giles announced the launch of the NRV Resiliency Grant Program.

NRV Resiliency Grant Program

The fund totaled $1.6 million, and any small business in the four counties, excluding the towns of Blacksburg and Christiansburg and the City of Radford, with less than 20 full-time employees can apply for up to $15,000 in grant money.

“Some of the other local grant program or statewide program are complicated, so we wanted this to be a simplistic process,” Gnegy said.

Applications were accepted from Jan. 8 through Feb. 5.

“We applied as soon as we found out,” said Allison Hollopter, a Giles County business owner.

Hollopter behind the bar at The Bad Apple

Hollopter’s restaurant, The Bad Apple, recently got the news that they received the full $15,000.

After having to temporarily close twice during the course of the pandemic, she plans to reopen Friday, March 12 and, with the help of the NRV Resiliency money, she hopes to stay open.

“Because of this, we know that we can reopen, and we know that we have the support of our community to get it together,” Hollopter said.

“Being able to work with those truly small, local businesses, to let them know that we are going to be able to support them to the tune of $15,000 cash, was great all-around,” Gnegy said.

According to Gnegy, only $659,110 from the fund has dished out to the 76 businesses that have already benefitted from the program.

With nearly $1 million still left in the fund, a second round of applications will be launched on April 19.

Businesses who are interested in these funds are urged to contact their local Tourism Office to discuss eligibility and to answer any questions.

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