Small businesses have been hit hard over the past months, facing challenges that they could not have imagined. In May, we announced that Salesforce had teamed up with COSBOA to offer one-off $10,000 grants to eligible Australian small businesses to help them deal with the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
We are proud to introduce you to a few of the small businesses that have received the grants.
We’re excited to announce our first wave of successful applicants of the $10,000 Small Business Relief Grants! 🎉— Salesforce APAC (@salesforceapac) July 14, 2020
With @COSBOA, we hope this will lift COVID-19 affected business across Australia.
It's a pleasure to see them innovate in the next normal! https://t.co/qqcqty9q53 pic.twitter.com/3qQLeeDLZ9
For Bronwen Mackenzie and Rachel Campbell, running the oldest music school in Canberra involves teaching 700 students across 700 lessons a week. When news started breaking in January about a potential pandemic, Bronwen and Rachel started planning how they could pivot to provide their experiential and in-person lessons online.
Part of that included pre-recorded online music lessons that parents and children could stream and play along to, like an episode of Playschool. The grant will see them film another 10 episodes of ‘Music lessons on the TV’ and market them to childcare centres. Not only will the episodes bring music and joy to many more children, Bronwen and Rachel hope they will help future-proof the business.
Go to the north west of Tassie and you will be hard pressed to find a cafe or restaurant that doesn’t sell Henry’s Ginger Beer.
“It took off like a rocket here. It tastes like old fashioned ginger beer. We’ve never been able to keep up with demand,” said the couple behind the popular ginger beer Marc and Carolyn Watson-Paul. But sales took a dramatic dip when restaurants, cafes, events and festivals had to close their doors.
Marc and Carolyn realised then that direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales were missing from their business model. This grant will help launch the DTC channel and introduce delivery, keeping the ginger beer flowing during these tough times.
GOGO Events is a social enterprise that creates paid employment for women at risk of or experiencing homelessness. With large corporate events usually their bread and butter, the effects of the pandemic hit GOGO Events hard.
“At the moment we’re calling our business NoGo Events because with lockdown and social distancing all our events have been cancelled,” said Founder Sarah Gun.
Now with this grant and the new backing of two organisations, Sarah can continue helping disadvantaged women – she plans to fund and find a commercial solution to end period poverty. For many young women, even as young as eight, they don’t go to school or work because they don’t have access or can’t afford period products.
“For some people this has been their life’s work. Our first step is to set up a forum for conversation through a website, with the ultimate goal to create a pathway to employment for women who are facing barriers because of period poverty,” said Sarah.
Linga Longa Farm is a real life Farmer Wants a Wife story! Since Lauren followed Greg Newell back to his farm 10 years ago, the couple has been hitting the road to sell cuts of certified grass-fed, hormone-free and antibiotic-free beef at The Beaches Market at Warriewood and Carriageworks Farmers Market at Eveleigh.
Linga Longa Farm has survived drought, bushfires and floods, but nothing could have prepared the business for COVID-19. Greg and Lauren have done their best to keep delivering meat to people, finding customers through Facebook and doing a lot of kerbside drop-offs. But perishable produce isn’t the cheapest item to deliver.
They’re hopeful that with this grant they can explore cold chain logistics further and send their meat out in refrigerated trucks.
“One of our greatest joys is when people carve up a Christmas roast and they can say it came from Linga Longa,” said Greg. “We feel we’re there at your Christmas table and that’s really important to us to keep that connection.”
Dr Susanne Bahn and Geoff Bahn have used their expertise in the workplace safety discipline to start Tap into Safety. As a workplace safety and employee mental health training platform they provide companies with the knowledge they need to reduce workplace injuries and fatalities.
“We were heading into a record month in March,” said Susanne. “But when talk of a lockdown started on 8 March everything stopped. Budgets were frozen and people started focusing on preparing people to work from home.”
Now with interstate travel and onsite visits no longer an option, Tap into Safety has had to pivot to training online. This grant will help Tap into Safety remove their panoramic software that is no longer suitable in this current remote environment and start developing online content built on the Codes of Practice and guidelines of Safe Work Australia.
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Pip Marlow is CEO ANZ at Salesforce.