Small Business Assistance

In 2015, Sustainable Long Island (SLI) worked with the City of Long Beach and its business community on a number of initiatives aimed at supporting business start-ups and entrepreneurship, retaining small businesses, promoting access to capital, and serving as a resource on marketing and technology strategies.  The work completed in 2015 included helping 20 small businesses with marketing and sales strategies to increase revenue and holding a small business resource expo with speakers and resource tables in the historically underserved community of North Park. SLI also helped the City design and print a Business Resource Directory and map, as well as coordinated a job training program in hospitality and culinary arts with the Long Beach Latino Civic Association (LBLCA). This foundational work in Long Beach initiated the launch of our Small Business Assistance Program.

Since then the program has expanded to include not only training but peer-to-peer mentoring as well. During the fall of 2016 and winter of 2017, Sustainable Long Island completed a series of one-on-one style small business mentoring sessions designed provide personalized assistance to small businesses and/or aspiring entrepreneurs. Partners included the City of Long Beach, the Long Beach Martin Luther King Community Center, the Concerned Citizens of North Park, the Christian Light Missionary Baptist Church and the Long Beach Latino Civic Association.  The program included four small business workshops with industry experts at different venues in and around North Park. Small business mentors included representatives from Capital One, SCORE Long Island, the Farmingdale Small Development Center, Long Beach Chamber of Commerce, Bridgeworks and Cybernet. Mentor sessions covered business growth strategies, resources for accessing capital, business plan development, how to utilize digital marketing tools, and other topics to assist in the success of a small business.

Having stemmed from Hurricane Sandy revitalization, SLI’s small business assistance efforts in Long Beach were made possible by funding provided by provided by Citi and Capital One. This innovative program model has done more than offer business resources and local knowledge-it has:

  • Provided critical job training and employment opportunities in the community
  • Promoted personalized education for residents and entrepreneurs
  • Contributed to a sense of community for residents and business owners
  • Supported the regional economy and business infrastructure

Training sessions cover business growth strategies, resources for accessing capital, achieving financial success, how to utilize digital marketing tools, and other topics to assist in the success of a small business.



Ryan McTiernan, City of Long Beach Kelly Sullivan, Long Beach Chamber of Commerce, Jason Kohl, Farmingdale Small Business Development Center, Emily Humes,City of Long Beach, Leah Tozier, Long Beach Chamber of Commerce Erika Hill, Sustainable Long Island