The Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce has been working to encourage entrepreneurship and matching skills to local employers’ needs in 2019, according to information provided during the Jan. 9 Chamber coffee.
Two new programs were added to the community this year: Bourbon County E-Community and Work Ready Community. The focus of the two is enhancing local economic development through entrepreneurship and workforce development.
Loans for Businesses Through Entrepreneur Community
Bourbon County E-Community provides access to funds, which are locally administered through the Chamber. These loans included start-up businesses as well as existing business purchases or expenses. The funds are accessed through NetWork Kansas, whose mission statement is to promote an entrepreneurial environment throughout the state that connects entrepreneurs and small business owners with expertise, education, and economic resources.
Those who have received these loans in Fort Scott from July 1 to Dec. 31:
Smallville Crossfit, an E-Community Loan of $40,000.
Luther’s BBQ, an E-Community Loan of $45,000.
Smallville Crossfit, a start-up loan of $25,000.
Lulther’s BBQ, a start-up loan of $30,000.
Margo’s LLC (a salon and spa), an E-Community Load of $39,000.
Other events in support of E-Community: a luncheon to educate on the loan program, an entrepreneur appreciation luncheon, a semi-monthly local newspaper ad promoting the loans, and planning for a Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge, in partnership with Fort Scott High School (judging for the challenge will be March 11, 2020.)
Work Ready Community
Work Ready Community is a nation-wide program to aid matching people to a job that needs their skills and preparing people to have the skills that employers need.
Work Ready Communities is working at the grassroots level to make the country more competitive and closing the skills gap that threatens to paralyze the U.S. economy, according to its website. They do this by providing a community-based framework.
To learn more: /https://www.workreadycommunities.org/
Bourbon County became a Work Ready Community in Sept. 2019.
A group of 10 people from Bourbon County, USD 234, USD235, Fort Scott Community College, the City of Uniontown and local employers attended a Work Ready Community Workshop in August 2019.
Kansas initiated an initiative for high school juniors to take the Work Keys test and earn certification. The certification is to improve hiring and employee retention, help provide employees who have the skills needed and help students attain success in landing a career.
To view the Chamber leadership this year,click below:
To see the Chamber sponsored events, view the flyer below:
To join the Chamber, click here: