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  • Kenton Tsoodle

OKC offers new resources for small businesses

Our city continues to add resources for small businesses, minority-owned businesses, and individuals to help them recover from COVID-19 and grow more resilient.

Currently the OKC Rescue Program, the organization distributing Oklahoma City’s ARPA relief funding, is receiving responses to an RFP that will support programs for workforce development and job training. The workforce development program will offer skills training, education and development for individuals in their current job or those seeking new job opportunities in two priority fields: digital and technology careers and hospitality and service careers. That might be a Java programming class, Google certification, hotel management courses, food handling classes or other training.

In the RFP, we are looking for training and development partners that provide a specific type of coursework, skills development and job training. It’s important that these partners also serve Oklahoma City residents who live in Qualified Census Tracts or are low- or moderate-income households. The RFP is posted on the Alliance site. This program will give job seekers quality training, fully covered by relief funding.

A more specific training opportunity for business owners is the Real Deal, a six-month growth program that provides training for small business owners, fosters collaboration and innovation, and provides mentors to help business owners plan, access capital and find an influential network of resources. Sessions cover finances, marketing, sales, operations and leadership, and each participant finishes the program with a succinct, actionable growth plan. OKC Rescue is sponsoring the next cohort that kicks off in August.

By the end of these projects, the Alliance hopes to have increased the competitiveness of Oklahoma City’s workforce, increased wage growth, and provided meaningful economic opportunities for Oklahoma City residents who are unemployed and underemployed.

The Greater Oklahoma City Chamber is presenting The Impact of Supplier Diversity, a luncheon on Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to share several Oklahoma City companies’ successes in diversifying their supplier base. Learn how they’ve improved their company’s health and resiliency as well as strengthened Oklahoma City’s small business ecosystem by adding minority vendors to their supply chain. For tickets,

There are many organizations that work together to understand and meet the needs of small businesses in Oklahoma City. I’m proud of our work to provide meaningful resources to help businesses and individuals increase their capacity and grow stronger.


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