Northspan Receives federal funding for underserved entrepreneurs in the Northland
Northspan partnered with the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa to celebrate the launch of a new funding program on Monday afternoon. The program name is DAWN, Driving Access to Wealth & Networks.
During a press conference, U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Minority Business Development Don Cravins, presented a 4-year grant totaling $2 million in federal funds to the Northspan to launch the DAWN programming serving Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Kanabec, Koochiching, Lake, Mille Lacs, Pine, and St. Louis Counties and the Native Nations of the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa, Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, and Red Lake Nation.
DAWN’s mission is to address needs related to successful entrepreneurship and business growth among Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Individuals (SEDI) in our region. DAWN works to enhance the entrepreneurial ecosystem focusing on inclusion of Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Individuals (SEDI). Barriers to successful entrepreneurship for SEDI inhibit growth, innovation, and equitable access to resources in the region. DAWN focuses its programming on Native Nations and the Black community, as well as women and veterans in northeast Minnesota. While all are welcome to access the programming, these are the focused for Northspan now. Strong relationships and a deep understanding of existing cultures and racial groups are necessary to provide the most effective support to SEDI entrepreneurs.