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FY2020 Dream Grants for Ward 7 & 8 Microbusiness 8-30-19


Dream Grants for Ward 7 & 8 Microbusinesses

Updated August 30, 2019

The Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD) is excited to announce that we will be soliciting applications for the 2020 Ward 7 and 8 Microbusiness Dream Grants starting September 1, 2019.

The grants are to provide business development support to the growth of microbusinesses in Wards 7 and 8. These microbusinesses must be appropriately licensed, have fewer than five (5) employees, the business must be located in Ward 7 or 8, and Ward 7 or 8 residents must have ownership of50% or more of the of the business.

DSLBD intends to award between 20 and 25 grants, of up $10,000 each, from the $200,000 in total available funding for 2020.

How do I apply?

Full guidance and instructions will be available in the Request for Applications (RFA) that will be released on or before September 1, 2019, on the DSLBD website: https://dslbd.dc.gov/node/610162.


The deadline to apply online is November 15, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. Applications will only be accepted through the online application system.

Who can apply?

Appropriately licensed microbusinesses with fewer than five (5) full-time employees located in Ward 7 or 8 for which residents of the Wards comprise 50% or more of the ownership of the business are eligible. See the Request for Applications for additional eligibility requirements.

How can the funds be used?

The grant funds can support startup or expansion efforts for expenses made by the business between the dates of January 1, 2020 through August 30, 2020. Additional allowed uses and restrictions will be outlined in the RFA.

How will awardees be selected?

Grant recipients will be selected through a competitive application process. All applications from eligible applicants received on or before the deadline will be forwarded to an independent review panel to be evaluated.

A program team will review the recommendations. The Director of DLSBD will make the final determination of grant awards. Grantees will be selected by February 1, 2020. Funds will be available no sooner than spring 2020, on an individual payment schedule per awarded grant.


We encourage interested applicants to attend a Dream Grant Information Session and will offer one or more Grant Paperwork Bootcamps. Please refer to the DSLBD Eventbrite at http://bit.ly/dslbd_events for the most accurate information about the date, time, and location of these meetings.

Questions may be sent to the Innovation & Equitable Development Team at the Department of Small and Local Business Development at [email protected]. All questions must be submitted in writing.


DSLBD reserves the right to issue addenda and/or amendments subsequent to the issuance of this Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) or RFA, or to rescind the NOFA or RFA at any time.