The OWN Bahamas Foundation is hoping to help Grand Bahama and Abaco businesses affected by Hurricane Dorian and has conducted a needs survey with entrepreneurs on those islands.
OWN’s annual grant competition was not held this year in order to shift resources to hurricane relief, according to a press release.
“The foundation has already completed initial assessments in Grand Bahama — including meetings with key stakeholders and the hosting of two focus groups with a cross-section of entrepreneurs,” the release revealed.
“Council members facilitated two focus groups in Grand Bahama, with entrepreneurs representing industries from clothing retail to biofuel production.
“The focus groups were held to gather qualitative data on the impact of Dorian on small business owners, efforts on the ground to assist in the recovery and how the foundation can amplify these efforts.”
OWN Bahamas Foundation founder Sebas Bastian said in the release that he hopes OWN’s support for business owners affected by Dorian can be “strategic and effective”.
“Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the engines that drive the Bahamian economy,” said Bastian.
“After natural disasters of this magnitude, recovery efforts often focus exclusively on reconstructing housing, for obvious reasons. But, we also need to ensure that the anchor facilities, essential services and SMEs return to support the quality of life in these communities as we rebuild.”
According to the release, the foundation is hoping to help through small business grants, the OWN Talks speaker series, advisory services and small business advocacy.