City Launches New Small Business Assistance Suite Dec. 4, 2020 The City of South Bend’s Office of Diversity & Inclusion launched its new Small Business Assistance Suite to help connect aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners with resources in accounting, legal support, and other professional services. “A survey we conducted of 600 small minority-owned businesses in South Bend found that more than 80 percent didn’t qualify for CARES Act funding as a result of barriers in qualifying criteria,” said Diversity & Inclusion Officer Michael Patton. “This program will help connect small business owners with resources to register their business, apply for licenses and open doors for them in the formal economy.” To apply for the program, visit https://tinyurl.com/CoSBBAS. Businesses can connect with services like legal services, bookkeeping and tax preparation, financial and business coaching and M/WBE certification support. The program will also be available to support future recipients of the South Bend Alive grant program and neighborhood organizations. “This restorative work asks embedded lawyers, accounting firms, and business coaches to serve and inspire business owners to build all businesses stronger, particularly those owned by the Black and Brown communities of South Bend,” said Antonius Northern, Inclusive Project Manager.