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Idea Cafe's Grant Finalists

Who will win $1,000.00 for their business from Idea Cafe? Your votes are in, so stay tuned... we'll be announcing the winner here on www.ideacafe.com within the next few days.

Finalists for Idea Cafe's Small Business Grant in Honor of Kent Capener Are:

Lisa Crews Charlena Edge Gazelle Simmons
Tanikka Watford-Cunningham Markus Johnson Thomas Mogire
Sandre Moore Kelli Scott Tim Staggs
Tami Truex Tamara Barnes Rachel Binger
Tricia Ryan Sherree Wilson Amy Montemarano
Christina Sampson Kevin Lowry Donna Chaffin
Gerhard Guevarra Kevin Porter Jessie Baldwin
Karen Spaeder Leah Larson Kat Fulton
Caryn Brady Keli Johnson Felicia Clemons
Ted Kaiser Kelly Koeppel Brian Reilly

Scroll down to read about the 30 Finalists.


Lisa Crews
Primitive Art Deco
Louisville, TN

What does your business do?
I offer hand painted home decor in a variety of themes, retail and wholesale.

How will this grant help your business?
The grant would enable me to reach shop owners who are not comfortable ordering online. It would also enable me to go forward with design ideas that I have on paper, and bring them to fruition.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I am interested in adding a children's line to our product line and donate a portion of the profits to the Children's Hospital in Knoxville, TN. I would also like to sponsor some events held by our local Humane Society.


Charlena Edge
Creative Edge Floral Design
Indian Head, MD

What does your business do?
Creative Edge Floral Design provides fresh floral arrangements for weddings and events.

How will this grant help your business?
Having a floral refrigerator would allow me to take on larger floral projects. Currently, I am limited on the quantity of flowers I can purchase and I have to make purchases at the last minute because I am unable to store them properly. The use of a floral refrigerator would allow me to save money by purchasing flowers in bulk when specials are offered. It will also allow me to deliver fresher floral products to my customers.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Creative Edge Floral Design will "pay it forward" by donating floral arrangements to various charity fundraising events in our area. We would be proud to chronicle our efforts to share with Idea Cafe.


Gazelle Simmons
Admin Services
Newnan, GA

What does your business do?
Since 1998, I have been a Virtual Assistant specializing in data entry, presentations, word processing, database management, editing and proofreading services, mass mailings, thesis and manuscript processing as well as other clerical and secretarial services.

How will this grant help your business?
replace my current computer that is three years old.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Currently, I am serving as the Vice President for Women Business Owners, Global Moderator for Moms Working for the Kingdom of God, Website Promoter for the Woman2Woman Lounge, Membership Coordinator for the MicroWebmasters Alliance and Founder of the Newnan Networking Group. I'm also a member of the American Business Women's Association, Women Business Owners, Woman Owned, SmallBizPreneurs Network, LinkedIn, Soflow, Marzar, and Plaxo. None of which can continue without a computer.


Tanikka Watford-Cunningham
Eastern Organics
Washington, DC

What does your business do?
Overview Eastern Organics features fresh organic produce that is harvested east of the Mississippi River. We also specialize in a multitude of exotic and nutritious produce such as purple peppers, star fruit, and red bananas. We have established relationships directly with certified organic farmers, which mean there are no third party companies or exorbitant prices.

How will this grant help your business?
Without this grant Eastern Organics will not be able to effectively launch its community outreach component -- fundraisers and neighborhoods-in-need projects. Several schools, churches, and other non-profit organizations will go with out the opportunity to buy fresh organic produce while raising funds for their institutions. It is a strategic way to promote healthy eating and giving back to the community at the same time.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
The answer to this question brings us full circle as to why Eastern Organics needs this grant. There is a diet-related health crisis facing the American people. Eastern Organics provides the opportunity to conveniently incorporate fresher and higher quality produce in anyone's lifestyle while supporting local certified organic farmers. This all can help decrease chronic disease rates. In addition to promoting a healthy eating lifestyle via our community outreach model, we are planning later to expand to franchising the fundraising program.


Markus Johnson
Practical Resource, LLC
Boynton Beach, FL

What does your business do?
We offer financial consulting to families and small businesses. Our services include: Life and Health Insurance, Mortgages, Annuities, Real Estate Sales, Debt Solutions, Credit Restoration, Moble Notary Service, and Businees Opportunities.

How will this grant help your business?
This grant will enable our marketing department to purchase the software and equipment needed to expand our marketing to the internet. We currently do not have the financial resources to complete the expansion, and this grant would give us the opportunity to expand.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
If Idea Cafe's Grant helps our biz reach greater success, we will "pay it forward" by offering our Debt Solutions and Credit Consulting FREE to one family for one month!


Thomas Mogire
Multi Globe Ventures
Nairobi,

What does your business do?
Agent and Reseller of International call back and and VoIP service/minutes. I am an agent for GlobalTel Ezcor Division of Florida USA.

How will this grant help your business?
The Grant would enable me to purchase the minutes in bulk and then resell. I would also build a website for online clients. Currently I depend on collecting from client as they pay to purchase calling credit.This limits my sales and increases expenditure due to the cost of money transfer.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I currently have put together a team of five young people with whom we do the sales and earn direct commisions. With More business, I wilthey will be partners and agents as well. I will contribute in my small way in creating jobs in a Kenyan society that has high joblessness.


Sandre Moore
Silk Voice Studio
Corpus Christi, TX

What does your business do?
Provide professional, award-winning voice talent for radio, television, film and industrial productions, coupled with experienced production.

How will this grant help your business?
My problem at this point is none of the equipment, webdesign, etc., is expensive, but I'm having to do everything one piece at a time instead of being able to get it up and running all at once. I've already been told by a local producer that he can send me business from his studio and refer me to his "over-spill" clients as soon as I'm up and running with a quality product.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I'll use my studio to give local "student" actors the professional credits and experience that my mentors gave me. I have established great relationships with our local community theatres and the theatre programs at two local colleges, so I'll have a terrific, energetic talent pool.


Kelli Scott
Serendipity Cafe and Boutique
Augusta, KS

What does your business do?
Our business will offer the community as a whole good food, a place to shop in a Christian atmosphere and a place to relax. For the youth of our community our business will offer a "safe" alternative for those needing a place to hang out after school and during school vacations until parents return from work.

How will this grant help your business?
Updates so that we can have live music on Friday nights for the youth to have a safe place to be.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
The whole concept of Serendipity Café and Boutique is a community effort to bring in the youth and others. To give a place to come during the month on Friday nights we will "pay it forward" in various ways ie: sponsored children's events, community events, and etc.


Tim Staggs
Staggs Legal Marketing Services
Columbus, IN

What does your business do?
My business provides Internet and limited print marketing services, mostly for a targeted client base of small law firms and solo practitioners. As a licensed attorney myself, I already have a firm grasp on what it takes to market a law practice, and our clients find my input to be an invaluable resource for their growing practices. We offer two primary services as the backbone of a firm's online marketing plan: the website (of course) and online/email newsletters.

How will this grant help your business?
This grant would allow me to develop this added level of service for my clients that presently I just don't have the time to work on. Clients often have trouble expressing even how they want the "basics" of their website to look, so having a set of 10-20 templates to select from that are representative of my design tastes and capabilities would make this process easier for both myself and the client.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
First, I will offer an internship for a local college student. Second, I consider an important aspect of my work with clients to be my ability and responsibility to help them get their small businesses off the ground. Third I plan in the next year to start an online forum for small firm attorneys/solo practitioners. Finally, I want to grow the business to a point where I can offer grants to graduating law students from Indiana's four law schools to start their own practice.


Tami Truex
Head to Tail Pet, Home & Errand Service
Valparaiso, IN

What does your business do?
Right now I just do pet sitting. Pet sitting is where I come into your home and care for your pets while you are away or work long hours. It includes bringing in the mail, newspapers & packages. Watering plants and taking out the garbage. I am adding an errand service with in the next 3 months.

How will this grant help your business?
A lot more advertising. I need to put my biz name in the phone book.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
The way that I pay it forward is to help raise money and donations for helpless animals. I belong to Wishbones For Pets(tm). This was started by a pet sitter and it is run by pet sitters that run a fundraiser at Thanksgiving time for a organization of their choice.


Tamara Barnes
TG Barnes Wellness Group
Hampton, VA

What does your business do?
TG Barnes Wellness Group is a start-up health and wellness promotion company whose mission is to empower individuals to take responsibility for their own personal health by providing natural and holistic solutions through educational and consulting services, as well as retail products. Wellness coaching is available to individuals who are overweight or suffering with chronic diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes. They receive assistance in meal planning, exercise maintenance, and natural solutions. Corporate programs are also available.

How will this grant help your business?
The grant will enable me to improve the website and add features such as an online health assessment that potential clients can fill out prior to enlisting services. With this grant I can also create a company identity that will match the superior services clients receive.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I began my business as a result of pregnancy discrimination. I have always worked in the wellness field and when I became pregnant with my son in 2006, my employer terminated me. Since then, I have been speaking to women on how to protect themselves in the workplace. To "pay it forward" I am beginning the steps to start The Mom Fund, a nonprofit that will assist women or men who have faced pregnancy discrimination or whose Family Medical Leave Act rights have been violated.


Rachel Binger
Prep and Tech
Far Rockaway, NY

What does your business do?
My business is an educational institution for pre-kindergarten to fifth grade. Our program has an hour dedicated daily to teaching children how to use technology. We also will implement foreign languages, fine- art program, music program, athletic program and hands-on learning. On Fridays, the children must go out into the field and apply what they have learned. This could be through field trips, guess lectures, research, data, and a host of other methods other than relying on textbooks only.

How will this grant help your business?
The grant money will enable me to open the school. Without paying for the processing fee at this time it would delay the school from opening the appropriate time. I would like to promote the school now so that Prep and Tech becomes a household name in the Far Rockaway community. I would love to complete the website to look more professional. The volunteer who started the website did not complete it. Our website is currently underconstruction.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I would like Prep and Tech to partner with other agencies and pull our resources together to help those who are need. Our mission is to foster ongoing community events, communication and education. This mission will help Prep and Tech stay focused on helping those in need and keeping the community abreast to our new programs and initiatives that we are setting forth in the community to make it better for those who live here and visit our neighborhoods.


Tricia Ryan
The Marketing Chefs
Toronto, ON

What does your business do?
We help educate small business owners on the in's and out's of marketing P's with a focus on Internet marketing. Our workbook teaches features & benefits, positioning, your 60 second commercial and all the online tools for traffic generation and conversion. We teach live workshops and online workshops via Internet and teleseminar technology.

How will this grant help your business?
expand our profile into the US market

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Document each tool used and profile the successful use of the tool on our blog/podcast site. Add it to a chapter of our workbook. Also give it away as one of tips sheets on our website. Write an article on the experience and post it via article submitter pro


Sherree Wilson
Fully Confident Restwear, Inc.
Newport News, VA

What does your business do?
We assist the patient with image building items as well as prosthetics once they have had chemo or surgery.

How will this grant help your business?
Same as above the softwear to be able to provide items at a fater rate so the client would not have to wait so long.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Every year I have been able to put together free of charge a thank you conference for cancer patients and also a comedian that is a survivor helps to bring laughter. Also I have a few companies that donate bags and products to them. I would like to offer a conference to encourage survivors who need to go back into the work force due to cancer bills to start their own business even if it is Avon.


Amy Montemarano
Women Run The World, LLC
Philadelphia, PA

What does your business do?
WRW is a social networking website that helps women travelers find running partners.

How will this grant help your business?
I would use this grant money to set up special online private groups for women traveling to the same professional conference, and for alumnae of women's colleges.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I intend to invest every dollar of profit from WRW into microfinancing programs that help women entrepreneurs around the world. This is not charity, but established loan programs with 90% payback rate. Women helping women run the world, so to speak. Membership in WRW is free. Website revenue is expected to come mostly from online advertising, but also through future partnerships and sale of WRW branded running gear.


Christina Sampson
The Traveling Pot Personal Chef Services
Jonesboro, GA

What does your business do?
The service I will be providing will be that of a personal chef. I want individuals and families to be able to come home to a delicious, nutritiously prepared meal, cooked in their own kitchen, allowing for more quality time with their loved ones without the stress of having to create their own meals or ordering takeout. I will strive to provide quality cuisine to all clients, regardless of the price. I would also like to educate families on cooking healthy, using natural and organic products.

How will this grant help your business?
With more specialized training and certification, I would be making myself more marketable and giving me an advantage over my competition. I would also be more marketable to a vast array of potential clients. The training program would allow me full acess and membership to many of the exclusive website postings for personal chefs across the country.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I would like to eventually create a local cooking program for school aged students so that they can be educated on healthy cooking and eating practices, as well as tap into their creativity through cooking. I would also like to develop a scholarship fund that would enable high school students interested in the Culinary Arts to attend culinary schools and workshops that would allow them to eventually start their own businesses.


Kevin Lowry
Homemade Delivered
Wooster, OH

What does your business do?
Our business prepares and delivers homemade style meals to people's homes. A client can order one meal for a night they do not want to cook or they stock their fridge for the entire week. All meals are prepared fresh and come packaged ready to be reheated in the microwave or conventional oven.

How will this grant help your business?
The Grant Money would allow us to have the means to implement an aggressive marketing campaign. This campaign would include the following... 1. Distribution of Filers, Menus and Post cards through the mail. 2. Host a community "tasting party" that lets us invite the Wooster Community to come and taste selected menu items. 3. Develop TV and Radio Spots 4. Local print Ads in the local paper and ad book (Money Saver) These four points allow us to develop a sustainable client base.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
If this grant helps our business reach greater success we will pay it forward by developing a local collaboration of small business owners to develop networks and strategies that we can partner to reach new clients and expand our client network. We will also reach out to similar businesses outside of our target area to help them develop successful strategies for success.


Donna Chaffin
Maranatha Farm
Ridgeland, SC

What does your business do?
Please note: I am Donna Chaffin a Volunteer Grant Writer, submitting this grant on behalf of Maranatha Farm, which is owned by Karen Wilkins. Maranatha Farm is a 10 acre animal rescue shelter. We go to the aid of abandoned and abused animals and nurse them back to health so that they are able to be presented for adoption to a caring and loving family.

How will this grant help your business?
We would be able to provide sanitary kennels for intake of animals with infectious diseases that we often have to turn away. It would also enable us to complete our materinity kennels which provide shelter for incoming mother dogs that have liters of puppies we put up for adoption.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Maranatha Farm will continue it's work as an animal rescue and shelter and pass along 10% of all donations received to other non-profit organizations similar to ours.


Gerhard Guevarra
All-American Fencing Academy
Fayetteville, NC

What does your business do?
The All-American Fencing Academy provides recreational and competitive fencing training as well as facilities and equipment for the life-long sport of fencing. The All-American Fencing Academy will grow the sport of fencing, develop responsible athletes, and build a stronger fencing community by creating opportunities for participation in the sport and providing educational opportunities for students, coaches, and referees.

How will this grant help your business?
The Academy has not had the budget to effectively advertise and market itself through traditional advertisement avenues. The All-American Fencing Academy would like to blanket the area with advertisements and marketing to spread the word of the only fencing academy within a two hour radius.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
The All-American Fencing Academy is located in the heart of the newly-revitalized historic downtown where there are other small businesses striving to succeed. Some of these depend on Fayetteville's special events (like the annual Dogwood and Folk Festivals)to bring in customers. We're one of the few businesses whose patrons return at least twice weekly, plus more travel from other states to our competitions. We will encourage our students and their families to visit other businesses in the downtown area. This will help our neighboring businesses reach more customers with no extra effort on their part.


Kevin Porter
Cirkulock, Inc., The First Street Dance Circus
Brooklyn, NY

What does your business do?
We produce circus style street dance entertainment. This includes dancing contortionists, costumed breakdancers,acrobats and a magician who can make it all disappear!

How will this grant help your business?
The grant will enable us to give video-feedback to the participating schools, and artists. It will also allow us to put video footage on our website for prospective customers to view.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
We will develop an on-going "circus arts-in-education" program for schools through-out the city. Ultimately, we hope to tour the programs to schools outside of New York City. Our purpose is to serve by inspiring creativity.


Jessie Baldwin
Speckled Bird Art Photography
Las Vegas, NV

What does your business do?
I am a photographer of children and families, specializing in modern family portraiture. I utilize natural light and I work exclusively on location. My style is fresh and playful and fun. My slogan is "real life captured" and that is my goal with each session.

How will this grant help your business?
The grant money would help me fulfill my dream of giving back to the community in a tangible way. I would use the money will pay for the photo shoots of the families, as well as enlargements and framing for the images on the walls and marketing materials to distribute to other area hospitals. I hope to be able to fund at least two different hospital displays, and through marketing I would love to end up with some sort of gallery in all of the local area hospitals.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
To "pay it forward", I would love to offer a free photo session to any family that "graduates" from a local NICU for one full year. This way I am fulfilling my committment to these families to tell their story and offer them the chance to celebrate their homecoming in a tangible, memorable way.


Karen Spaeder
Rain Frog Apparel
Fullerton, CA

What does your business do?
Rain Frog Apparel is a designer and online retailer of bamboo clothing for women and children. Currently sold online and in select brick-and-mortar locations, Rain Frog Apparel uses bamboo because it is a sustainable, naturally organic resource that regenerates quickly, absorbs greenhouse gases, features built-in UV protection and anti-bacterial properties, and provides an environmentally friendly alternative to fabrics that require the use of pesticides or petroleum. By choosing bamboo, and by donating a portion of sales to environmental groups through 1% for the Planet, Rain Frog Apparel proves its commitment to giving back to the planet.

How will this grant help your business?
Exhibiting at trade shows and other events will put me in front of buyers and therefore enhance my potential for greater retail distribution. Most of my money is going toward the purchase of inventory currently, so I need to create an avenue for trade shows and marketing materials associated with the events.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
As a writer for Entrepreneur magazine and Entrepreneur.com, I regularly pay it forward by creating useful articles for small-business owners. I also help existing businesses that I include in my articles by providing free press. Naturally, I would continue to mentor entrepreneurs in this way. I will also continue in my commitment to giving back to environmental groups.


Leah Larson
YALDAH Magazine
Sharon, MA

What does your business do?
I founded YALDAH magazine in Fall 2004, when I was thirteen-years-old. In the four years since then, YALDAH has grown to have readers around the world. YALDAH is a quarterly magazine 'for Jewish girls, by Jewish girls.' Each issue features fiction stories, articles, interviews, crafts, articles, tips, advice, recipes, crafts and more. Every feature is created by a young Jewish girl, from the idea to the writing of the article, to the photographs and illustrations. All the articles are presented in a fun and light way, but transmit valuable lessons and ethics to young girls.

How will this grant help your business?
Although many girls have been touched by YALDAH and had the ability to enjoy it, due to limited funds for advertising our subscription list has remained in the hundreds. We want more girls to be able to join the YALDAH community and contribute to the magazine. With the grant money, we will be able to launch an advertising campaign that will reach hundreds of thousands of girls and their parents, increase our readership, plus enable us to expand YALDAH to publish high-quality books for Jewish girls.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
YALDAH's mission is to inspire and empower youth, especially young girls, to follow their dreams and make a difference in the world. When youth see that thirteen-year-old girls can successfully publish a magazine, it gives them the confidence to be a leader in their community and take action in bettering the world - whether it's starting a recycling club, community newspaper, or a volunteer organization.


Kat Fulton
Sound Health
Del mar, CA

What does your business do?
Music Therapy & Wellness Services and Consulting

How will this grant help your business?
Currently, my budget has limited funds for continuing education. This grant would allow me to attend the rhythm training and keep my skills fresh! As a musician and therapist, I deeply value opportunities for inspiration and continuing education.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I will provide free Sound & Synergy events to the community once per month during June, July and September. I will reach individuals with the greatest need, such as families of hospitalized children (through healingnotesinc.org) and families facing cancer (through cancercopingcenter.com). During the past two years I have hosted four community rhythm events (60 minutes, 35+ participants each) to foster community togetherness and raise awareness for music therapy. In American society, we go to concerts and listen, or perhaps dance at pop concerts. BUT what happened to communal music-making? WE'RE HERE TO BRING IT BACK!


Caryn Brady
Pixequill Web Design and Services
Felton, CA

What does your business do?
We design and construct web sites mostly for small businesses, community organizations and churches who cannot afford the web design staff that the big companies can. We provide web hosting services, design services and photography as needed for the websites.

How will this grant help your business?
It would enable me to purchase the software I need to further this business venture in a more timely fashion, which would enable me to support myself and my staff/family with this business, and thereby show its viability for the further business plans, which is explained in the pay it forward section below.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
I've been working on a grant to expand my business to include other individuals who are, like myself, chronically ill (FMS) and would benefit from a business run out of one's home at one's own pace, in a comfortable environment that lends itself to our special needs. Not only our physical needs but also the need to contribute, to be part of the greater society, and to use one's gifts of creativity, technical abilities, and our business organizational skills to contribute towards our own financial support and to benefit others in our world.


Keli Johnson
Kreations By Keli
Chester, PA

What does your business do?
Kreations By Keli provides unique and creative gift solutions and event planning for all occasions.

How will this grant help your business?
This grant would enable me to reach a broader clientele. I would like to begin agressively targeting the corporate market in my area. Recently there has been a revitalization in my areas including the opening of a large casino and the building of a professional soccer stadium. An improved website with online ordering and payment capabilities would put me ahead of many of my competitors, thus increasing my business tremendously.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
If I am awarded this grant. I would intern/mentor a young local teen monther to provide her with hands on experience and knowledge of running a business. We would collaborate on the up keep and maintenance of the new website as well as other projects. Meanwhile encouraging and providing her with the support and information to start her own business.


Felicia Clemons
Fenomenal Communications LLC
Philadelphia, PA

What does your business do?
We are an event planning and public relations agency. Our goal for the Northeast area is to offer quality event planning services and marketing strategies to promote our clients as well as our agency to the public. The unique selling point to each customer will be our ability to build a sound plan to execute an event or marketing approach to suite their budget and desires. Our niche in the market is our ability to offer our clients competitive prices with services being offered at what essentially is a "One Stop Shop".

How will this grant help your business?
Currently I've only been able to advertise on one station, however, with this grant I will be able to get more airtime.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
Many of my associates are starting businessess and need a great deal of advise and information. As a public relations specialist I will be another voice for Idea Cafe. Word of mouth is a powerful tool. My business is to get the word out.


Ted Kaiser
Dock 7 International, LLC
Red Bank, NJ

What does your business do?
Dock 7 International is an import/export company with two facets: we're an importer of handcrafted home decor items from the Philippines ("The Pasalubong Collection") with wholesale products including picture frames, jewelry boxes, vases, decorative bowls and more, each made of natural materials such as coconut, banana, rice, and shell; secondly, using our extensive contacts in manufacturing overseas (in particular China, India, and the Philippines), we offer product sourcing and import/export services to business owners.

How will this grant help your business?
Participating in gift shows is quite expensive. Many shows run between $2,000 and $3,000 just for the booth fee alone. These shows are essential to find customers in the gift industry and this grant would enable us to go to an extra show that we might not otherwise have been able to afford. We can also use some of the grant money to improve our web presence which will go hand in hand with our participation at the shows.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
We believe networking is essential as business owners and so we want to create a forum for interaction between entrepreneurs that we know. There is nothing better than bouncing ideas off others or exchanging contacts and business knowledge. We would like to set up a conference call meeting once per month, that enables a group of entrepreneurs to engage each other. As a personal goal for myself, I would like to one day set up an organization that works with aspiring entrepreneurs from the inner city to give them the resources they need to be successful.


Kelly Koeppel
k2forma
Mooresville, NC

What does your business do?
k2forma is a full-service creative agency specializing in print, identity, brand development, and web design. We offer complete creative services helping small businesses and non-profit organizations achieve their goals through advertising, marketing, communications, and public relations.

How will this grant help your business?
With this grant, we will be able to continue to dedicate our services to the pro-bono non-profit projects, LungStrong and BIG on Green.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
k2forma is 'paying it forward' every day through our mentoring program and through our support of non-profit organizations. Each year, I take on 1 - 2 students and I create a mentoring program that is tailored to fit their needs and goals. I am also currently working on two significant pro-bono projects for worthy non-profit causes. Lung Strong is a 15k/5k charity race in which all proceeds are donated to Lungevity for lung cancer research. Additionally, I am also working with BIG on Green, a non-profit group dedicated to helping businesses get "Green".


Brian Reilly
Capital Region Economic Development Corporation
Harrisburg, PA

What does your business do?
The Capital Region Economic Development Corporation (CREDC), the economic development arm of the Harrisburg Regional Chamber, is the leading organization for economic development activities in Cumberland, Dauphin and Perry counties. The Harrisburg Regional Chamber and CREDC serves as a catalyst for promoting growth and quality of life in the region by providing a unique blend of business, community and economic development, and advocacy services under one roof. We offer programs and resources to help expand, create, and attract business in the Central Pennsylvania region.

How will this grant help your business?
Without the $1,000 grant I have to rely on in house promotional materials that are less than professional. Not to mention my budget for these activities is less than $300, hardly enough to put together a real sales pitch to over 12 college and university presidents. It is extremely difficult to convince colleges to contribute money, especially without a serious and professional promotional packet.

How will you "pay it forward" to help others in some way?
The whole project pays forward to the greater Harrisburg region by helping to attract and maintain more college students. These students are essential to our economy, local business, our housing market, tourism, and economic development in general. Not only does this initiative aid our local economy, but it increases the student experience of those young men and women taking classes at partnering schools by helping them find things to do, meet students from other schools, and participate in relevant and meaningful internships.


For grant options check Grants du Jour and other offerings in Idea Cafe's Biz Grant Center.

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