Resilient Business Resources
Below we are working to build a comprehensive list of resources to help your Big Island business succeed and be more resilient! New content is being added all the time. Please contact us if you would like to add a resource or report a broken link.
COVID Recovery Resources
County of Hawaiʻi Office of Research & Development—COVID-19 information and resources compiled specifically for Hawai‘i County’s business community.
The Hawaiʻi Small Business Development Center’s (SBDC) homepage has the latest info on federal loans, grants, and programs to support small businesses impacted by the pandemic. Local offices in Hilo and Kona.
ALTRES COVID-19 Employer Resource Site—designed to help Hawaiʻi businesses navigate the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
ProService Hawaiʻi—offers a very thorough and detailed Employer’s Guide to Coronavirus.
General Business Resources
Hawaii State Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs, Business Registration Division (BREG)—Visit the Business Action Center, which includes a checklist and resources for starting a small business!
Hawaii Small Business Development Center (SBDC)—check out this great video introduction to learn more! SBDC has offices in Hilo and Kona.
Mana Up—Honolulu-based business accelerator working to create Hawaii’s next 100 local companies earning over $10 million in annual revenue, supporting products rooted in Hawai’i that elevate authentic Hawaii stories through their brands.
Hawaii Island Business Plan Competition—Annual competition open to for-profit and nonprofit businesses focusing on developing startups or expanding existing businesses based on Hawaii Island.
INNOVATE Hawaii—INNOVATE Hawaii builds the strength and competitiveness of Hawaii manufacturers through an array of programs and services, including coaching and training, consulting, collaboration-focused industry programs, and grant opportunities. INNOVATE Hawaii offers a FREE one-hour consultation on the first Tuesday of every month!
Hawaii Investment Ready—HIR is a business accelerator designed to help social enterprises better understand and scale their impact and business models; and to assist them in accessing resources to implement their next level of growth. A scholarship program is available to help businesses cover tuition costs.
Kohala Center—the Kahiau Rural Business Development Microloan Program and the Hawai‘i Food Producers Fund are two microloan programs aimed at increasing access to capital for rural businesses in Hawai‘i.
Sustainable & Resilient Business
GoFarm Hawaiʻi—”Find Your Farmer” directory, with information for farmers providing CSA, delivery, and on-farm pick-up options.
The Locavore Store—Hilo’s all-local grocer, providing in-season produce and hand-crafted goods and products from local makers.
Hawaiʻi Island Farmers’ Markets—full list curated by Edible Hawaiian Islands.
Fresh Feast CSA—by Adaptations, Inc., subscription-based service supporting sustainable farms on Hawaiʻi Island; itʻs the next best thing to growing food yourself!
Hawaiʻi Food Basket “Da Box” Program—purchases island-grown produce from local farmers and resells to customers island-wide.
Compost Hawaiʻi—offers monthly membership subscriptions for home and office compost collection.
Kohala Center—provides cooperative and business development services to farmers, value-added producers, and small businesses. Check out (and support) their current list of cooperatives in Hawaiʻi!
Hawaiʻi Food Basket—nonprofit with the mission of ending hunger in Hawaiʻi County. Get Supplemental Nutrition Access Program (SNAP) benefits information and learn how you, as a business or farmer, can donate!
Hawaii SNAP Hui—dig into the Double Up Food Bucks resource page to learn more about the program and to spread the word about the program to others!
CDC Healthier Worksite Initiative—Toolkits to help your business plan, implement, and evaluate worksite wellness programs.
Wellness Council of America (WELCOA)—has a variety of free information, including this Well Workplace Checklist (PDF).
Here’s 101 Low-Cost Ideas for Worksite Wellness.
Right Direction—helps employers identify and address depression in the workplace.
American Psychiatric Association Foundation—The Center for Workplace Mental Health has lots of great free resources.
- Recycle Hawaiʻi—nonprofit organization serving the Island of Hawaiʻi, offering waste reduction resources for employers and employees!
- Sustainable Island Products—family-owned, Hawaiʻi-based distributor of eco-friendly, compostable and recyclable alternatives to everyday single-use items.
Permitting & Compliance
Hawaiʻi State Sanitation Branch—Permit applications, forms, guidelines, and informational handouts for food establishments.
Equity, Equality, & Empowerment
Full Life Hawaiʻi—nonprofit empowering people with disabilities on Hawaiʻi Island! #renaissanceofinclusion
ADA Fact Sheet Page—information on ADA employment, facilities, parking, service animals, etc.
Hiring Employees with Disabilities—U.S. SBA resource on hiring disabled individuals and as well as information on financial incentive programs.
North Hawaiʻi Action Network—The North Hawaii Action Network is a group of Hawaii Island community members committed to protecting human rights, civil liberties, equality, and the health of our home planet. They offer local businesses the chance to proudly welcome EVERYONE to their store, office, or service center with an Equality Pledge that they can proudly display.
Catholic Charities Hawaii—provides assistance with preparing and filing appropriate documents to individuals stabilize their immigration status.
Micronesians United—nonprofit empowering Micronesians for greater self reliance and educating the community at large about Micronesian culture.
Pacific Gateway Center—nonprofit providing various social services for immigrants and refugees as well as programs that provide job training, creation and placement.
Goodwill Industries of Hawaiʻi—Goodwill’s mission is to help people with employment barriers to reach their full potential and become self-sufficient.
Hawaiʻi Legacy Foundation—nonprofit whose mission is to support, empower, educate, unify, and facilitate LGBT organizations and individuals in Hawaiʻi. We’ve linked to their great list of resources.
Hawaiʻi Island HIV/AIDS Foundation—dedicated to building a healthier, stronger community with an emphasis on HIV and related health issues.
NGLCC—provides nationally recognized LGBT-owned business certification as well as resources to help those businesses grow.
Hawaiʻi Island LGBTQ Pride—annual gathering and festivities, usually in June. Local businesses are encouraged to celebrate and participate!
Minority Business Development Agency (U.S. Dept. of Commerce)—The MBDA Business Center Honolulu works with minority business enterprises to generate increased financing and contract opportunities.
The Pōpolo Project—Hawai‘i-based nonprofit redefining what it means to be Black in Hawai‘i.
Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA)—OHA offers Mālama Business Loans, providing working capital for Native Hawaiians to help establish or build upon a small business.
Hawaiʻi Island Native Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce—strengthening the Native Hawaiian community and businesses by supporting a thriving economy rooted in language, culture, and aloha.
Nalukai Academy Startup Camp—a free, intensive ten-day entrepreneurship, technology, and design camp for high school students hosted with the goal of ushering in the next generation of intelligent, collaborative business professionals.
Hawaiʻi Island Business Plan Competition Student Tuition Scholarship—annual scholarship competition open to UH-Hilo, HCC, HCC Palamanui Campus, and Hawaii High School students.
Veterans Business Outreach Center of the Pacific—program of the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, designed to provide entrepreneurial development services such as business training, counseling and mentoring, and referrals for eligible veterans owning or considering starting a small business.
U.S. Small Business Administration—information on funding programs, training, and federal contracting opportunities for veteran-owned businesses.
VA.gov Veteran Entrepreneur Portal—quickly connects Veteran entrepreneurs to relevant ‘best-practices’ and information.
Ladies Artisan Market—Empowering “Ladypreneurs” on the Big Island!
Patsy T. Mink Center for Business & Leadership—was established by YWCA O‘ahu, the U.S. Small Business Administration and a community of partners to become the only Women’s Business Center (WBC) in Hawai‘i.
Zonta Club of Hilo—Zonta Club of Hilo is part of Zonta International, an organization of professionals dedicated to empowering women worldwide through service and advocacy.
SCORE Women’s Initiative (Hawaiʻi)—comprised of female mentors, entrepreneurs, and business women; provides business support education and fellowship for its members.
Hawaii Biz Babes—monthly women-focused entrepreneurial workshops where grassroots businesses, healers, artists, and teachers are invited to network, learn and share.
U.S. Small Business Administration—federal resources for women-owned businesses.
My Locker Program—HouseMart Ben Franklin Craft Stores support local crafters by providing them a space to display and promote their products or services in their stores.
Marketing & Branding
Big Island Pulse—We offer customizable promotional packages to fit any budget. Let us help you spread the word that you’re OPEN and READY for business!
Big Island Made—allows businesses who meet membership criteria to use branding on packaging, point-of-sale materials, collateral, or anything related to your member business.
Hawaiʻi Seal of Quality—branding program managed by the Hawaiʻi Agricultural Development Division established to protect the integrity and value of local agricultural products, which must be entirely produced in Hawaiʻi to meet program standards.
Made in Hawaiʻi with Aloha—branding program managed by the Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture (HDOA) and is promoted jointly by various departments at the state level.
Ongoing Training & Development
ThinkTech Hawaiʻi—check out the Adventures in Small Business educational video series for local businesses.