On May 31, 2020, Lana’s Scoops Ice Cream Shop celebrated their second year in business. On that day, Lana had this message for her well-wishers.
“Today is our second Anniversary. It's been a wonderful two years. I want to thank all of our customers, Family and Friends for support. We also want to thank our staff for their time and hard work. Scoops would not exist if it wasn't for all of your help and support. Also, I would like to thank the Lord for blessing us with our little Ice Cream shop in Withee. It's been great getting to know you all! Summer is here, so come on over and get some ice cream, with your friends over here at Scoops.”
Almost as if in celebration, Lana was awarded a $1,000 grant from the Red Letter Grant organization, a foundation aimed at supporting women-owned business in west-central Wisconsin.
Red Letter Grant founder Rebecca Cooke has this to say on her organization.
“Just 31% of businesses in Wisconsin are owned by women - leaving a gap that we feel not only in ownership, but leadership + mentorship. We know a lot of women who make things happen within a household, within an organization and within our community - but we don't always see those women at the helm. They're the worker bees. The creation of this grant was to encourage more women to take risks, to build a more innovative region + state, and to lead.
“We unabashedly believe that when you fund, mentor, stand by and stand up for women, amazing things are bound to happen. That's why we've created this all-encompassing approach. By curating small business workshops, cultivating mentor + peer networks, and providing start-up capital - we're checking all the boxes so women in Wisconsin have the tools they need to succeed. Give us 10 years, you'll see.”
With the disruptive upheaval of the COVID-19 pandemic, Red Letter Grant created a Relief Fund aimed at supporting existing women-owned businesses who have been impacted throughout the region they serve. The grant series gave preference to minority owned businesses among the Black and Indigenous/People of Color (BIPOC) and the LGBTQA communities.
The idea was to support those businesses who “fell through the cracks” of other federal and state assistance programs. To that end, Red Letter Grant has established 11 grants for $1,000 each to women in order to ensure that their businesses succeed through the global pandemic and beyond. The goal is also that they remain as fixtures on the main streets of the communities they serve.
Lana’s Scoops has indeed become a fixture of the Owen-Withee community. It is a place for gathering, celebrating, and—oh, yeah—ice cream.
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