Dime Bank awards Boerum Hill business with ‘community chest’ grant

(L-R) R. Gary Campbell, Nina Demushkina, Amerrah Brown, Patricia Strong, Shanasia Grace and Steve Miley pose with the check from Dime Bank outside of Beautiful Amore on Sept. 18.
Photo by Caroline Ourso

Dime Community Bank presented a burgeoning Boerum Hill business with a check for $5,000 on Sept. 18 as part of its small business recovery grant program.

The grant program, which Dime leaders say serves as a “community chest,” has so far bestowed 60 grants totaling $300,000. The grants — awarded in partnership with the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York — benefit local businesses and nonprofit organizations throughout the five boroughs and on Long Island.

Of the 60 grants awarded, Beautiful Amore Skincare is one of the many which have been given to minority- and women-owned businesses. In addition, 76 percent of the grants supported small businesses and 24 percent benefited nonprofit organizations.

The unique vegan skincare business at 97 Bond St. was one of the many local businesses that — for one reason or another — did not qualify for the Paycheck Protection Program, said R. Gary Campbell, assistant vice president and branch manager of Dime’s Bay Ridge branch.

“This grant made it possible for Beautiful Amore Skincare to pay rent for the months the shop was not open,” said Campbell. “It also allowed them to pay employees and purchase PPE necessities.”

Amerrah Brown smiles with her check from Dime Bank.Photo by Caroline Ourso

Beautiful Amore Skincare founder and owner Amerrah Brown said her connection to Dime Community Bank has been a saving grace for her business.

“I’ve built a great relationship with Gary Campbell — he is not only the branch manager but also a human, he understands the struggles of the small business and is always looking for ways to assist,” she told Brooklyn Paper. “The products that Dime offer makes it a perfect fit for my small business. I don’t have to worry about unnecessary fees eating away at profit.”

Dime first looked for businesses and nonprofits to award in May, with a second round of applications that took place in June.

“We received over 500 nominations and applications from local businesses and nonprofit organizations,” said Patricia Strong, Dime vice president and CRA officer. “We’ve received a great response from our business community, and our Dime team has worked tirelessly to make this happen in a timely fashion.”

“Our goal was to get money in the hands of small businesses quickly because there was an urgency, as there has been with other disasters,” added Steve Miley, senior vice president of strategic marketing at Dime.

“Small business is the backbone of America. The success or failure of small businesses drives the US economy,” Brown said. “I’m glad Dime understands that and is doing what they can in any capacity to help small businesses thrive in this difficult time.”