Topeka Host Relief Program continues to help local businesses during pandemic

Published: Aug. 12, 2020 at 6:28 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Greater Topeka Partnership says through their host relief grant, they have helped out over 120 Shawnee County businesses.  

The financial impact of the pandemic is far greater than anyone could have imagined, especially on smaller, locally owned businesses.

"Some of them may have been able to be open the entire time but because there is a pandemic and there are concerns for close proximity and social distancing there may have been a decline in their customer base or they had to close for a period of time."

Back in May The Greater Topeka Partnership launched their Host Relief Program to help businesses experiencing economic injury during the pandemic.

The program has received over $700,000 in private donations and it's all being put back into the community.

"We're able to get that infused back into the community by purchasing gift cards from businesses that have been struggling during the pandemic and then when we purchase those gift cards we're able to submit workers who were impacted by the pandemic whether it was a furlough or a layoff and then they're able to redistribute those gift cards to them"

Businesses can also apply to receive a grant up to $5,000 from the host relief program. 

"We have delivered over five hundred thousand dollars in checks and we still have two more issuing of checks in September in November."

Unfortunately not every business is able to survive through the pandemic, but The Greater Topeka Partnership says they're doing their best to help as many as they can.  

“We don’t want to loose any businesses you know when we get on the other side of this. We want to be able to go skating we want to be able to go shopping. We don’t want to be on the other side and say we have to start our whole retail market over again. We want to be able to go to the businesses that we are used to supporting.”

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