COVID-19 Resources for Lakeland Small Businesses
COVID-19 Resources for Lakeland Small Businesses

June 1, 2020

To aid the entrepreneurs in the Lakeland area during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have compiled a resource pack, featuring funding streams, productivity tools, and information updates from local, statewide, and national sources.



Polk CARES Small Business Grants

• Polk CARES Small Business Grants requirements + grant amounts have recently been updated

• Grant amounts have been doubled, and now range from $2,000 – $10,000

• Applicants can now apply whether or not they have received other stimulus funding, such as PPP, EIDL, or SBA debt relief

Read full grant details + updates here


Disaster Loans for Small Businesses COVID-19 by the SBDC

 Resources around working remote, selling online, funding help, & staying healthy

Updated with new information regularly


Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business Guide and Checklist

 Checklist & FAQ’s from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce  

Payroll Protection Program Update Slide Deck from CenterState Bank

List of needed documentation to apply for the SBA Payroll Protection Program

 Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business Guide and Checklist

 Clarifies answers to frequently asked questions about emergency loans

 More Coronavirus resources form the US Chamber of Commerce can be found here

State of the Spark Corona Recovery Dashboard

 Resources around working remote, selling online, funding help, & staying healthy

Updated with new information regularly

Complimentary website updates regarding COVID-19 information by contacting with your request

CareerSource Polk: Short Time Compensation Information

 Information, links & examples about this program from the Florida DEO

Helpful clarification for both employers and employees

Good Intents Free Local SEO Updates

Catapult Members Good Intents are offering free changes to Google Business Listings

Update customers on how your operations have been affected by COVID-19

Good Intents has also written an article with tips about remote working as a team 


 State of the Spark Free Website Updates 

Complimentary website updates regarding COVID-19 information

Email with your request


City of Lakeland Cancellations & Closures

List of government offices and closures

Website will be updated as pandemic develops


Bridge Local Zoom Meetings

Calendar of scheduled Zoom meetings around Lakeland small business support

View recordings of past meetings on their Facebook page

Lakeland Chamber of Commerce Resource Guide

Includes links to Florida Chamber information + general business tips

List of Lakeland Chamber Restaurant Takeout & Delivery Options

 List of local businesses offering gift cards for purchase, submit an addition to the list here 


The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program

Short-term, interest-free loans to small businesses experiencing economic hardship

Small business owners with two to 100 employees can apply 

Up to $50,000 of relief available per business


Embarc Collective Open Source COVID-19 Database

Professional and personal resources for startup operators

Work from home tips, productive tools, collaboration software

Accepting contributions to the database here.


Florida Department of Economic Opportunity

Online applications available for Reemployment Assistance

Reemployment Assistance Hotline available at 1-800-204-2418

Provides a COVID-19 FAQ resource for those filing


Florida Health Department COVID-19 Information

Florida specific resources surrounding the state’s response to COVID-19

Dashboard featuring information about COVID-19 cases in Florida


Building a StoryBrand Podcast: Your Checklist for Getting Through a Crisis

• Host Donald Miller + StoryBrand CEO share a 6-part checklist for business survival

• 43 minute listen, available on all podcast platforms


Save Small Business Grants

• $5,000 grants available from U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

Eligible businesses must have between 3-20 employees

• Application requires a business’s W-9 and roughly 10 minutes to complete

• Applications go live on Monday, April 20th at 12:00 p.m. PT.

Medium Article: Dear Non-Profits, Small Businesses, Artists, Freelancers, Gig Workers, Self-Employers, Part-Timers, and Solo Shop Warriors Wondering What’s Next: This Money is For You. Please Take It.

Plain language breakdown of stimulus funding streams

• Written by Amanda Kool, lawyer and founder of AfLARA

• Updated as new information comes available


CO.STARTERS Recovery Guide

Aggregated list of outside nationwide resources

• Offers a free weekly “REFOCUS” workshop to help founders adapt their business model to COVID-19

• Hosts a “Straight Talk with Starters” weekly call to help founders connect and brainstorm with others


Salesforce Cares: $10,000 Small Business Grants + Business Resources

• Salesforce is giving $5,000,000 away in the form of $10,000 grants to help keep businesses afloat

• They are also offering free access to Salesforce Essentials 

Up and Running Program by eBay

• eBay is giving new businesses a free basic eBay story for 3 months 

• This will allow business owners to get help on marketing and merchandising

Inc. Stimulus 2020 Q&A

 Inc. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hosted a virtual town hall to answer questions about the PPP

Important takeaways from the town hall are available in bite-sized videos on their website

• Inc. will be hosting another town hall on April 10th to review stimulus program updates.


U.S. Dept. of the Treasury: Paycheck Protection Program Update

 Small businesses will be able to apply for a loan under PPP starting Friday, April 3

• Dept. released a top line overview of the program

• Information for borrowers can be found here

Application for borrowers is now available

U.S. Senate Summary of All Small Business Administration Support Options

 Overview document compiled by the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship

• Breaks out FAQs for small business owners about programs established by the CARES Act

• Includes Paycheck Protection Program, Disaster Loans, and the Small Business Debt Relief Program


NYTimes: F.A.Q. on Stimulus Checks, Unemployment and the Coronavirus Bill

 Commonly asked questions regarding new legislation

Includes information around unemployment updates and stimulus checks

Shopify’s Ecommerce Business Blueprint

Resource compiled by Ecommerce platform Shopify

• How to build, launch, and grow a profitable online store

Key tips around shipping costs, online store design, and more


SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans 

Loans available of up to $2 million in assistance

Long-term repayments available, up to a maximum of 30 years

Apply at


CO.STARTERS Recovery Guide

Broad list of outside links to nationwide resources 

Funding resources and tips for micro loans and grants


Facebook for Business Resource Hub

Resources such as toolkits, action guides, and more


Startup Commons Free Online Innovation Entrepreneurship Course

Offer 100% discounts for online courses 

Modules covering the startup journey, formation, validation, scaling 



Rally for Restaurants

Platform for buying gift cards to independent restaurants 

Use a ZIP Code search to find local favorites link Good Thyme or Mojo Federal

Invite restaurant owners to platform via link


Women in Hospitality United

A crowd sourced Google Sheet around restaurants’ responses to COVID-19

Ideas for how to adjust service during outbreak

Ideas for how to support staff


One Fair Wage

Applications currently open for emergency relief for service workers

Providing emergency cash gifts to applicants

Accepting donations to continue relief efforts 


Restaurant Opportunities Centers United

A national fund for restaurant worker relief

Applications currently open

Accepting donations here


Restaurant Workers Community Foundation

Nationwide fund for displaced restaurant workers

Fund currently under construction 

Email to join waitlist


USBG National Charity Foundation

Launched the Bartender Emergency Assistance Program to aid needs 

Do not need to be a USBG member to apply for a philanthropic grant 


  1. Justice

    I would love to include that many Lakeland businesses perhaps have no knowledge of an employee payroll tax credit that is still available to qualify for. Even for businesses that received PPP Loans. The ERC (Employee Retention Credit) is part of The Cares Act and is still up and running for a few months more for businesses that retained their employees during Covid time. Businesses from 5-500 employees can qualify and it’s not a loan they must repay. I found this information to share. To Verify check:


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