Through our APWorks Program we offer our historically disinvested beneficiaries in Orange and Los Angeles Counties equitable access to capital and economic resiliency. Through authentic business and community connections, we conduct outreach and provide support to underserved small and micro-businesses as well as nonprofits. Our APWorks offerings include high-quality technical assistance, access to capital, contracting and procurement assistance, marketing, compliance, operations, business development, mentorship, and training to aid each entity in its stabilization and growth.
Through direct and partner outreach that is sensitive to the specific needs and communication styles of the populations we target, we identify BIPOC-owned local businesses and nonprofits that are in need of technical assistance and financial support. Our business outreach strategy consists of social media and in-person (canvassing, distribution of flyers, etc.) activities, our connections with local business associations, and a Black-led Businesses database which we have developed over the years that serves as a roster of prospective program participants.
Business Skills Training
Each year, we provide a select number of BIPOC-owned small businesses with Business Skills Trainings to build each business’ capacity. These trainings are specifically designed to help early-stage entrepreneurs launch or operate and scale their businesses. The sessions cover topics such as business basics, contracting and procurement, marketing, management, compliance, operations, customer acquisition, accounting, taxes, and financial statements, legal and compliance requirements, media/social media management, financial literacy, financial planning, business development, and strategies that aid organizations to become stable and grow.
Coaching and Technical Assistance
Another way in which we build the capacity of BIPOC-owned small businesses and BIPOC entrepreneurs is through coaching and technical assistance support. We arrange one-on-one technical assistance sessions between small business owners and successful business coaches or mentors. These sessions are structured to address the needs of each entrepreneur and may cover topics such as grant writing assistance, business insurance, business license applications, accounting, developing cost projections, procurement assistance, financing, and assistance with invoices and reporting.
Youth & Adult Entrepreneurship Trainings
In collaboration with NFTE, the April Parker Foundation implements projects where local BIPOC youth and adults living in Orange and Los Angeles Counties attend Biz Camps that provide them with:
- the skills and resources needed for job placement and career advancement through an individualized, self-directed, and whole-person approach,
- entrepreneurial training and mentorship for individuals interested in launching their own businesses.
This intensive workforce development program provides participants with foundational knowledge, resources, and support to find pathways to suitable employment, become more valuable employees, and/or embark on their entrepreneurial journeys and develop economic resiliency to increase access.
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