Our Covid-19 Response
We understand that this is a worrying and uncertain time for individuals and businesses alike and so we would like to assure you that The Women's Organisation is, as always, here to support you in any way we can.
Whether this be through our team of expert business advisers who are on hand to help guide you through these difficult times and continue to thrive, or through our range of support to help individuals manage personally. We’re here for you.
This page will talk you through how we can support you and your business, along with some of the most useful links to Government guidance for your business.
In response to COVID-19 we have now redesigned all our services to operate on a telephone or virtual basis.
1-2-1 Business Support:
Whether you are thinking of starting a business, sustaining your business through the current climate, or even growing your business, we have a team of expert business advisors who are here to help you through the practicalities.
Contact us via email@example.com to find out more or to book your 1-2-1 telephone or video appointment.
Online Rapid Response sessions:
In response to the Coronavirus outbreak we are running a ‘Rapid Response’ series of online webinars and events designed to help your business survive and thrive. Led by industry experts, the series has so far covered topics from wellbeing and marketing, to accessing finance.
Find out what’s next on our Eventbrite page: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/the-womens-organisation-1282675313
Want to find out more? Please contact our team via firstname.lastname@example.org and we can talk you through the support available for you.
Key Links for Business
We’ve gathered some of the key links for the business support available at the moment.
For the most up-to-date advice and guidance on the support available for you and your business, please visit the GOV.UK website by clicking here.
Business Support Grant Funding
You can now apply for the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF) through your Local Authority:
Under the SBGF all eligible businesses in England in receipt of either Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) or Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.
Under the RHLG eligible businesses in England in receipt of the Expanded Retail Discount (which covers retail, hospitality and leisure) with a rateable value of less than £51,000 will be eligible for a cash grants of £10,000 or £25,000 per property.
Top-up to local business grant funds scheme
A discretionary fund has been set up to accommodate certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme (above) because of how they pay their business rates.
This fund will be allocated on a discretionary basis by your Local Authority.
Apply for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) helps small and medium-sized businesses to access loans and other kinds of finance up to £5 million.
The government guarantees 80% of the finance to the lender and pays interest and any fees for the first 12 months.
Apply for a coronavirus Bounce Back Loan
The Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) enables smaller businesses to access finance more quickly during the coronavirus outbreak. You should apply for this loan directly through your business bank.
The scheme helps small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and up to 25% of their turnover. The maximum loan available is £50,000.
The government guarantees 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. After 12 months the interest rate will be 2.5% a year.
Claim for wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Claim for 80% of your employee’s wages plus any employer National Insurance and pension contributions, if you have put them on furlough because of coronavirus (COVID-19).
Check if you can claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme:
This scheme will allow you to claim a taxable grant of 80% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months, and capped at £7,500 altogether.
HMRC will work out if you’re eligible and how much grant you may get, but you can visit the GOV.UK website to help you understand the process and if you’ll be eligible to claim: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-a-grant-through-the-coronavirus-covid-19-self-employment-income-support-scheme
Sign up for Universal Credit
If your income has reduced significantly, or you are now out of work, we would urge you to sign up for Universal Credit. If you're already receiving benefits you should get a Better Off calculation before applying to see how your current payments might be affected.
Find out more: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/universal-credit/
Use this Coronavirus financial support finder to see if you and your business could be eligible for loans, tax relief and cash grants: https://www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder
Share your experiences with us
We are actively lobbying local and national Government on the issues which are currently affecting businesses to make sure that they are properly supported through the Coronavirus crisis. Your insights and experiences can help inform these discussions.
Whether you have successfully applied for a Government grant or have found your business outside the scope for support – we want to hear from you. Tell us how you’ve found the process, how quickly you were able to access support and any challenges you’ve faced.
Tell us via email@example.com and help us to represent SMEs and social businesses so we can protect jobs, incomes, and the local economy.