Brooklyn Center Restaurant Struggles to Survive COVID-19 Restrictions
Jambo Africa has been a part of the Brooklyn Center community for about 10 years. The restaurant serves up delicacies from East and West Africa. The menu consists of cassava leaf, potato greens and more.
However, COVID-19 dished out a situation Jambo Africa owner Simone Chambliss was not expecting.
“The bills don’t stop, and if you’re just opening your doors just for take out, and you have to have all of the lights on, all the utilities, keep on going on,” Chambliss explained. “To be frank with you, if I didn’t own this, if I were renting, my first choice would be this is the time for me to get out. “
The Liberian business owner received a proverbial life raft after getting a $10,000 grant from Hennepin County in the spring, and she plans on applying for new grant money that opened recently.
“It would help because the last one helped. I was able to pay the mortgage and pay some other bills,” Chambliss explained.
Restaurants, bars, gyms and other fitness, event an entertainment venues can apply for the funding. Businesses that have already received funding in the past are still eligible to get grants. The only restriction is that companies can’t use the money to pay for the same thing twice.
“If you’ve received money from Hennepin County before, you’re eligible for up to $10,000 and if this is the first time you’ve applied, you’re eligible for up to $15,000,” explained Mary Matze, principal economic development analyst for Hennepin County.
The deadline to apply is Dec. 1.