SUMMIT, NJ - Mayor Nora Radest, in collaboration with The Summit Foundation and Summit Downtown, Inc. (SDI), has established the 'Sustain Summit Fund', an emergency assistance grant program designed to help small Summit businesses that are facing economic challenges due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak and related containment measures.

Independent business owners with a physical retail address in Summit that have been negatively impacted by the restrictions placed on commerce starting in March 2020 are invited to apply. Applications will be reviewed by a committee made up of residents and representatives from Summit Downtown Inc. and The Summit Foundation. Applications will be evaluated promptly to ensure relief funds are distributed as quickly as possible.

The 'Sustain Summit Fund' is, itself, funded through donations from individuals and area corporations. Tax-deductible contributions can be made by accessing a GoFundMe link. The Summit Foundation is contributing matching funds up to $50,000 during the fundraising campaign.

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A day since the fundraising effort launched, the page has raised more than $36,000 of a $250,000 goal.

The Summit Foundation, formerly the Summit Area Public Foundation, fosters philanthropy by identifying local needs and offering donors flexible ways to make a difference in the lives of their neighbors. In 2019, The Foundation granted nearly $600,000 to 38 local nonprofit agencies. Summit Downtown, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that represents all retailers and businesses in the Central Retail Business District, encouraging the development and growth of business in the downtown.

“Our small business owners are facing an unprecedented economic challenge,” sadi Radest. “While I fully support how important the current restrictions on social gathering and commerce are, my heart breaks for our local businesses that are severely and disproportionately affected. I hope that you will support the 'Sustain Summit Fund' and help our local small businesses to weather this storm.”