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'I have set on the board to give away $1.5 million': Black Chamber of Commerce helping businesses

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Posted at 2:34 PM, May 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-13 14:34:22-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Jaime Walton is a business owner and he’s also an Indianapolis Black Chamber of Commerce board member. The Black Chamber of Commerce is trying to make sure businesses survive the pandemic.

"So far I have set on the board to give away $1.5 million,” said Jaime Walton.

“It's been very tough. You see a lot of businesses aren't making it through the pandemic. Some of them get to us too late; by the time we have grants for them they may already be upside down or they've closed their doors and gone out of business,” said Walton.

He owns the top Geico store in the state so, he's doing well, but he knows many Black-owned businesses are being forced to close their doors left and right.

"Black businesses were hit hard because we may not be registered; we are used to doing business through festivals. What we are trying to teach them is even if you want to do business like that, let's get you legitimized, and we will hand walk you through it. I have done it myself for four businesses,” said Walton.

"A lot of the time we are hit the hardest because we have trouble asking for help,” said Walton.

But Walton and the CFO of the chamber, Greg Hicks, want you to let them be your lifeline. "We just don't have that, we don't know what is out there,” said Hicks.

They say we all need a hand at times and especially right now.

"Even if your business may not be structured properly, we will show you how to get it structured properly so we can get you loans and grants,” said Walton.

Click here to learn more.