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Military spouses often face regular moves around the country, making it difficult to build a traditional career. Fortunately, the military community has provided 9 resources to give you not only the financial resources to build a career but also the business training and business mentoring to make it successful.
9 Business Grants For Military Spouse:
1. StreetShares Foundation:
The StreetShares Foundation awards a grant annually to low-income veterans and military spouses. As a grant winner, you could receive $15,000, $6,000, or $4,000.
2. SBA loan programs:
As a small business owner, you can apply for an SBA loan program. Although you have to pay back the funds, these loans often come with a very low-interest rate.
You can explore all available grants from the government through Grants.gov.
This paid service allows you to explore all available grants. Check out Grantwatch.com today.
5. Small Business: Innovation Research (SBIR) Grant:
SBIR grants seek to help small businesses bridge the gap between research and commercialization. The award fund of over $3 million is enticing. But it takes months to go through the process.
6.Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program:
If your small business collaborates with non-profits to commercialize scientific research, the STTR program is a great opportunity.
7. Growth Grants from the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE):
As a NASE member, you can apply for grants of up to $4,000 every quarter.
8. State Government Grant Programs:
Some states offer their own small business grants. Find out more at your local Chamber of Commerce. State government grant programs: Some states offer their own small business grants. Find out more at your local Chamber of Commerce.
9. Nav’s Small Business Grants:
Apply for Nav’s quarterly small business grant of $10,000. Nav’s Small Business Grants: Apply for Nav’s quarterly small business grant of $10,000.
Military spouses are entitled to professional business advice from the Small Business Administration...
Can I Get Small Business Training As A Military Spouse?
The practical steps of starting a business can be complex. Especially when it comes to understanding how to start a veteran owned business. But there are plenty of training options available to military spouses. Here’s what to consider before pursuing a small business training program.
Here’s how to apply for a small business training program as a military spouse:
- Time frame: Most programs give you months to apply. The training program itself may range from one day to several months.
- What’s included? Program details of small business training programs vary dramatically. You might cover the basics or dive deep into a particular industry.
- Main application requirements: Every program has its own application requirements. But most programs say military spouses are welcome to apply. Typically, you don’t need to have your business up and running to apply. If you aren’t sure about the exact requirements, reach out to the specific program coordinator.
- Costs: Some training programs are completely free to military spouses. Others require a fee. Consider your budget when looking for the right training program for you.
- What kind of business is a training program best for? If you are just getting started, a basic small business training program will come in handy in any industry. But if you already have your business up and running, seek out a course that offers expertise in your industry.
Where Do I Find Business Training Programs For Military Spouses?
Military spouses that want to pursue a training program have many options. Here are some great programs to consider.
- Boots to Business: The Boots to Business training program is offered to military spouses through the Small Business Administration.
- Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship: V-WISE is designed for women veterans and military spouses to learn more about running their own businesses.
- The Entrepreneurship Boot Camp for Veterans’ Families: EBV offers a hybrid course with online and in-person training at no cost to veterans and their families.
Resilience and perseverance are key features of any successful business. As a military spouse, you’ve got those characteristics covered...
I Want To Further My Education - Can I Get A College Scholarship?
Military spouse grants for small business owners aren’t the only perk you can pursue. If you want to go to college, it’s possible to get a scholarship as a military spouse.
Here’s how to apply for a military spouse college scholarship:
- Time frame: Most scholarship opportunities are open for several months leading up to a new semester. If you receive a scholarship, you’ll find out before the semester begins.
- Cost: You shouldn’t need to pay for a scholarship application.
- Main application requirements: When applying for a scholarship for military spouses, you may need to meet certain income or location restrictions. Read the fine print before applying.
- Who can participate? Milspouses pursuing higher education can apply for military spouse scholarships.
Where To Look For Scholarship Opportunities?
A scholarship could change the trajectory of your finances for the better. Here’s where to start your search for a college scholarship as a military spouse:
- Air Force Association’s Spouse Scholarships: The award amounts range from $1,000 to $10,000. There are multiple scholarship options to apply to through this organization.
- National Military Family Association Spouse Scholarship: The award amount varies between $500 to $2,500 to help cover the costs of college. You can apply here.
- Military One Source: The military itself offers several scholarships and grants to military spouses. Here’s a full list of the opportunities.
- Local organizations: Ask around the community to find out if local organizations offer scholarships for military spouses. You might be surprised that many do.
I Want To Supplement Our Income - Can I Receive Business Counseling?
No matter what type of business you start, access to affordable business counseling is irreplaceable. As a military spouse, you have access to many business counseling programs:
Here’s how to apply for small business counseling programs:
- Time frame: The Small Business Administration offers many business counseling programs. Although it often takes a few weeks to set up an appointment, it may be worth the wait.
- What’s included: Every counseling program is different. But a small business advisor should be able to answer any questions you have.
- Main application requirements: The Small Business Administration offers advice to most small business owners, whether or not you are a military spouse.
- Cost: The SBA offers relatively low-cost counseling. Fees vary based on your location and the advisor.
Where To Find Small Business Counseling Services?
The advice you need varies based on your situation. Here’s where to look for small business counseling services:
- The Veteran Business Outreach Center Program: VBOC offers resources to military spouses building their businesses.
- SBA district offices: Nearby SBA offices often offer specialized advisory services to new business owners. Specifically, you can seek out a Women’s Business Center for unique advice for women business owners.
Access To Federal Contracting
Federal contracting can be a lucrative opportunity. As a military spouse, you have specialized access to federal contracting if starting a business with your veteran spouse. Here’s how to win federal contracts as a military spouse:
- Veteran Business Certification: If starting a business with your veteran spouse, this certification program offers increased access to federal contracts.
- Military Spouse Employment Partnership: MSEP works with employers to encourage training, hiring, and retaining military spouses as long-term employees in the federal contract arena.
Where To Look For Assistance In Federal Contracting?
A federal contract could be a game-changer for your business. If you need help applying for one, consider these resources:
- Women-owned small business federal contracting program: Applying for this program could open doors for your business.
- HUBZone: If your business is in a HUBZone, federal contracts may prioritize your business.
- 8(a) Business Development program: If your business is considered disadvantaged, that can give you a leg up when pursuing federal contracting.
Additional Help Military Spouses Can Get To Start And Run A Business
Whether you are a military spouse or veteran spouse, there are many programs to help you succeed.
- Apply for military spouse business grants.
- Apply for military spouse college scholarships.
- Resources are available for breaking into federal contracting.
- Don’t hesitate to work with a business counselor. They could help you take your business to the next level.
Small Business Ideas Perfect For Military Spouses
Not all business ideas are created equally. The right business for a military spouse needs to be flexible and portable. Here are some ideas to start the brainstorming process:
- Freelance: As a freelancer, you can provide all kinds of services, including writing, graphic design, and virtual assistant tasks.
- Start a blog or podcast: Have a message that needs to be shared? Consider starting a blog.
- Dropshipping: You can dropship from anywhere in the world.
- Coach or mentor others: Consider how you can help others achieve their life goals.
- Sell handmade products: Make the products on your own schedule and ship from anywhere.
Tips On Starting A Business As A Military Spouse
Starting a business can feel overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be. Here are some tips to help you get started.
- Make time: It’s easy to let business tasks fall to the bottom of your to-do list. Make time for this priority.
- Always put the customer first: A good customer experience is critical
- Choose the right business structure: The choice between sole proprietorship, C-corp, S-Corp, Limited Liability Company (LLC), and partnership decides how your business will interact with the IRS.
- Make a business plan: A business plan should serve as your roadmap to success
- Don’t forget about funding: If you don’t get a grant, another option is a small business loan for veterans. You might wish to explore the best business loans for veterans recommend by our experts.