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April 1, 2020 in COVID-19

Resources for Entrepreneurs During a Crisis

It would be an understatement to say that a lot has changed over the last month.

I feel so fortunate that the VilCap team is safe, healthy, and working from home. And I’ve been inspired by seeing how the COVID-19 pandemic has brought out the best in our neighbors, our colleagues, our frontline healthcare workers. This is so important, given how strained our society is: COVID-19 has not only created new challenges, but has also exacerbated deep systemic inequities – highlighting the need to support solutions to those problems.

We need innovation more than ever…

This crisis spotlights how fragile our society is, and how unprepared we are to respond to big challenges when they arise, especially when it comes to our most vulnerable populations. This is not a surprise: our team has been working for a decade to support entrepreneurs who have been calling attention to gaps in healthcare, financial services, and the workforce, and building creative solutions to fill them.

We will need to tap into that foresight, hustle and ingenuity. Village Capital has been working in three key areas where startups are contributing to the fight against the pandemic and related economic crisis: health and wellness, where our alumni are using telehealth to screen vulnerable patients and setting up rural pop-up clinics; economic resiliency, where they’re helping small businesses stay afloat and offer emergency financial aid to college students; and the future of work, where they’re driving advances in online and remote learning, and supporting laid-off workers.

To learn more about these COVID-crushing innovators, read the first few posts in our Crisis and Innovation series (and send more ideas!)

…and we need to tap into innovators everywhere

There is no individual or community that won’t be impacted in some way by COVID-19. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a funder, an investor or part of the entrepreneur support community, now is not the time to hit pause. We all need to keep moving and innovating to scale creative solutions to these big challenges. We’re betting, as we always have, on entrepreneurs who draw from their lived experience and often come from communities or backgrounds that sit in investor blindspots.

Here's how we’re adapting to the new normal at Village Capital:

  • Moving our cohorts online. We’re continuing to actively recruit for upcoming programs and moving our workshops and other programming to an interactive, online format for as long as is needed.
  • Enabling Founder to Founder conversations. One of the most important aspects of our work is peer-to-peer interaction. We’ve begun to hold private sessions where founders can workshop challenges together.
  • Delivering public webinars: We’re bringing our resources online with a series of webinars. We recently held a session on financial modeling, and on April 13 we’re offering a free training around our Abaca platform, called Milestone Planning for Growth.

How You Can Help

This crisis is breeding innovation – and if you’re looking for ways to join us in doubling down to back the entrepreneurs who are tackling this crisis, we have a few ideas:

  • Consider funding our efforts to accelerate the work of finding, vetting, and supporting the entrepreneurs that will help us address the immediate and long term systemic challenges we face.
  • Support our entrepreneurs – Support our entrepreneurs with funding, connections, mentorship and more, whether through us or through Abaca.

If you’d like to explore other ways of partnering, please email me.

I’m inspired by the way founders, advocates, investors, and supporters have rallied to help startups navigate through these uncertain days. We’ve shared some of the resources we’ve found most helpful below but if you’ve seen others, please let us know! Together, we will get to the other side of COVID-19.

Stay healthy and safe,

Allie

Resources for Founders

We’ve been so inspired by the ways the broader community we work with – entrepreneurs, funders, investors, ecosystem builders – are responding to this crisis. Here are a few of the great resources for entrepreneurs that I’ve seen this past week:

 
 

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