Thanks to a private sector grant, the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) will be able to support the start or expansion of an estimated 1 million small businesses in the U.S. by 2017.
Each year, SCORE, a nonprofit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and small businesses in the U.S., provides small business mentoring and workshops to more than 385,000 new and growing small businesses. A new grant of $285,000 from the Deluxe Corporation, which provides services for small business and financial institutions, will enable SCORE to add another 11,000 mentors, a 50 percent expansion of its trained volunteer base.
Since 1964, SCORE has helped more than 9 million aspiring entrepreneurs.
The new grant will enable SCORE to develop marketing materials to recruit new mentors and create benchmarking and skill assessment tools to help the organization select qualified candidates for mentorship roles.
The funds will also aid recruitment by coordinating national and local partnerships to identify and attract potential volunteers and create local public service announcements and social media campaigns to recruit mentors.
SCORE will also use the grant to enhance its services delivery by hosting a national leadership conference, executing a research study to measure and track the characteristics and habits of successful SCORE mentors and developing a national volunteer skills database to match mentors with small businesses.
“SCORE is focused on increasing our mentor base to meet the needs of the rapidly growing U.S. small business market,” said Ken Yancey, the organization’s CEO. “Today SCORE mentors support nearly 400,000 small businesses. This grant from Deluxe will help us achieve our goal of helping to grow one million small businesses by 2017.”
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Reach BusinessNewsDaily senior writer Ned Smith at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @nedbsmith.