New York City's five borough Chambers of Commerce and TD announced the specific neighborhoods and commercial corridors across the city in most need of revitalization -- including areas affected by Hurricane Sandy -- and how TD's $200,000 grant to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce will assist businesses with strategies to recover and rebuild.
TD Bank Group and the TD Charitable Foundation donated $200,000 to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce in November 2012 to help start the Citywide Neighborhood Entrepreneurship Project (NEP), which is aimed at addressing the needs of businesses through a series of programs that includes providing direct commercial revitalization services to shopping districts throughout New York City.
The project will help with merchant organizing, commercial beautification, shop local initiatives, and attracting businesses to low and middle income areas. Services also include programs aimed at direct referrals for small business services such as financing, accounting, hiring, and attaining permits.
The program comes in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, a time where many businesses across the five boroughs suffered devastating losses. This is the first citywide program that addresses needs of small businesses within low income neighborhoods.
"TD is proud to support locAl Small businesses through the Citywide Neighborhood Entrepreneurship Project, especially as the community recovers from Hurricane Sandy," said Peter Meyer, Market President for TD Bank. "We recognize the impact these donations can have, and our goal is to build successful partnerships that benefit our customers and their communities."
To kick-off the program, the five Chambers will focus on the following areas:
-- Fourth Avenue (between Atlantic Avenue and 65th Street)
-- Nostrand Avenue (between Atlantic Avenue and Eastern Parkway)
-- Red Hook
-- Sheepshead Bay (Sheepshead Bay Road; Emmons Avenue)
-- City Island
-- East Tremont Avenue (between Third Avenue and Arthur Avenue)
-- Second Avenue (between 68th Street and 98th Street)
-- Lower East Side (Avenues A, B, C, D, between Delancey and 14th Street)
-- Rockaway Peninsula
-- Roosevelt Avenue (between 82nd Street and 114th Street)
-- Midland Beach
-- South Beach
The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, through its 501c3 not for profit, the Brooklyn Alliance, will work with and provide direct technical assistance to assist NYC's other Chambers of Commerce (Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island) to develop and establish commercial revitalization programs within their respective Chamber foundations.
"I would like to thank TD Bank Group, the TD Charitable Foundation, and the city's other Chambers for their commitment to helping small businesses across New York City," said Carlo A. Scissura, President & CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. "This grant will enable us to help businesses grow and empower local communities. This also comes at a time when so many businesses are suffering. Urgent intake, assessment, and referral services are even more critical now, with businesses in need of support services to help them rebuild and replace equipment. In addition, many of the hardest hit communities -- such as Coney Island and the Rockaways -- are areas that are low to moderate income who desperately depend on small business for vital good and services, and job creation for their communities."
In addition, the NEP will seek to work directly with Local Development Corporations, Business Improvement Districts, and existing merchant groups to provide access to resources that help them gain visibility, expand offerings, and solidify operations. The Brooklyn Alliance already convenes these groups to meet on a quarterly basis to provide up-to-date information on market issues and conditions, and introduce important topics, such as helping merchants benefit from new tourism spending and attracting new businesses to the community.
"In the wake of Hurricane Sandy there is an opportunity to build even stronger commercial corridors around the city and boost small businesses that are so vital to neighborhoods," said Rob Walsh, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business Services. "Thanks to the generosity of TD Bank and the leadership of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Neighborhood Entrepreneurship Project will help revitalize shopping districts across the city and strengthen small businesses by connecting them to financing, technical assistance, and other services available through NYC Business Solutions and other organizations."