FARMINGTON — UpStart Thrift Store in Farmington has opened the process for small businesses in Washington County to apply for a UpStart grant of up to $5,000.
The deadline to submit an application is Nov. 23 and the recipient will be announced the week of Dec. 5, according to Phyl Amerine, one of the co-founders of the volunteer, non-profit organization.
This is the link to the UpStart application: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZMP6WGR.
The criteria for a grant is that the applicant must be physically located in Washington County and the applicant must have been in business for less than five years.
Applicants are asked to describe how they would use a grant, and if they are not awarded the grant, how would they be able to meet their business objectives otherwise.
UpStart Thrift Store at 235 E. Main St., is an organization that falls under the umbrella of Startup Junkie, a NWA non-profit organization. The thrift store has an advisory board made up of business people. Everyone who helps in the store volunteers their time.
Amerine said the co-founders, four women, along with Startup Junkie, came up with a new concept to raise money through a thrift store to help small business owners and help the community.
It has a three-fold mission:
• Provide good, quality items at a low cost to help everyone in the community.
• Provide grants to local businesses or startup businesses in Washington County.
• Provide money for interest-free loans through the Kiva NWA Hub loan program administered by Startup Junkie. This is a program that has helped small business owners with much-needed financial support during the covid-19 pandemic and helps entrepreneurs launch a new business.
The co-founders see the store as an organization that will give a hand up to a small business.
Amerine said UpStart is “excited to help grow a local family business.”
The thrift store is open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The store offers clothes for the whole family, home decorations and household goods, shoes, jewelry and other items.
Donations are accepted during operating hours or can be dropped off in a 24-hour donation box located outside the thrift store.