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Connecticut non-profit works to make sure small businesses get a boost

This week is National Small Business Week.

HARTFORD, Conn. — A Hartford non-profit is helping local small businesses get their start in the business world.

Al Gary spends a lot of his time shifting through blueprints. He’s a general contractor and small business owner working on projects like the Brackett Knoll housing development in Hartford’s North End.

“We’re building two-family homes. The owner owns both units, owns the house, and they have a rental income,” said Gary.

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But mapping out the foundations of these homes took some work. That’s where the non-profit HEDCO comes in.

Gary said the organization gives small businesses what they need to survive and thrive.

“I would have not been able to over the years accomplish or have the success I’m having at Brackett Knoll without HEDCO,” he said.

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HEDCO president and CEO, Kim Hawkins said the non-profit’s mission is to help small businesses start and stay in business by providing them with educational and financial assistance.

“We are that agency that looks to really be able to say we had an impact,” she said. “We’ve been able to watch you go from a dream and launch into an inception that takes off and builds and flourish into longevity.”

HEDCO is able to financially help small businesses through state funds, city funds and corporate partners.

To date, they have given out nearly $60 million in loans to small businesses.

“(Our mission is) also to be impactful in their communities. Making sure that there is economic development and growth in communities in which they serve,” said Hawkins.

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Like the economic development of the Bracket Knoll neighborhood. Giving people like Daisy who’s lived in the neighborhood all her life the opportunity to own their own home.

“It’s been a terrific experience for me to be able to own my own house because I’ve been looking for that for forever,” she said.

For more information about this nonprofit, click here.

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