FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) –The Downtown Fresno Partnership is launching a new initiative called ‘Stay Here.’ The program aims to help downtown businesses grow.

“Because currently we have a program for new businesses. So we wanted to share the love to keep our very strong rooted businesses in downtown,” said Jazzmine Young, program manager at the partnership. 

Young said they have $21,000 set aside for small business grants. They’re still working on the guidelines for who will qualify and how much they can receive, but she said it’ll likely be around $2,000.

“To give them that next level, whatever it may be. Whether they’re looking to expand into a new space, and maybe this can go towards their lease, or maybe they’re looking to do some renovations to their own space,” said Young, adding that many places are still recovering from the pandemic.

“Some of these spaces, especially our restaurants, are set for larger amounts of people and right now they’re not filling the space, which is tough because you’re paying for electricity, air conditioning, all that stuff for a large space but you’re not having the amount of people.”

The Downtown Fresno Partnership is also working to help businesses access other help.

“We’re also gonna utilize the resources some of our partners can provide us. So, Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce, they have a program that some of our members can go to learn more details about finances, technical services.”

The ‘Stay Here’ grant applications will be rolled out in mid-April.