Small businesses are in luck. There’s about to be more help on the way. The Portland Development Commission (PDC) has finalized the details of the Small Business Development Program (SBDP).

The PDC and five nonprofit organizations have joined forces to create the Small Business Development Program. The initiative is aimed at strengthening and assisting 155 businesses located in North, Northeast, and East Portland within the next year.

The businesses with 50 or fewer employees that wish to receive services, such as mentorship or loan packaging, only have to meet one requirement set for the program. The owner should have limited English proficiency, be a person of color, have a modest income that is 120% of the median family income or own a business in the targeted areas.

Two nonprofits are now offering services: the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA). The three other nonprofits involved start offering services in December, January, and March.

Jonath Colón, a business development coordinator at the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, says that the organization has eight meetings set with business owners and has already met with four to five businesses.

As long as a business meets one of the requirements, it is a guaranteed a meeting to assess whether or not the program is a good fit.

The program is not for everyone, though. Colón says that it is a commitment that might not be right for every business. Those who accept these services will be tracked long-term in order to gauge the impact of the program.

Colón says that often in economic development, “we develop plans, but this [program] is actually getting down and working with the individual business owner in a long term relationship to help them through the process.”