The Heritage of Pride Small Business Grant Program application period is from June 5, 2023 – July 16, 2023. Entries submitted after 11:59:59 PM ET on July 16, 2023 will not be eligible for entry or review.
Read below for more information about the grant opportunity including:
- Eligibility Requirements & Award
- Application Information
Official Rules are found at the end of this page.
Eligibility Requirements & Award
Program is open only to individuals who identify as part of the LGBTQIA+ community (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Non-Binary, and all of the gender and sexual orientations that letters and words cannot yet fully describe) who are at the time and date of entry:
- Physically located and legal U.S. resident (including D.C.)
- Eighteen (18) years of age or older (or the age of majority in their state of residence, whichever is older)
- A principal owner of a U.S.-based small business with its primary office located within a 50-mile radius of New York City (which is inclusive of Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Bronx and Staten Island)
- An annual business revenue of three million dollars ($3,000,000) or less in calendar year 2022
- Business is incorporated or otherwise considered a valid legal entity in good standing in its state of formation
Three (3) Grand Prize winners will each receive:
- A $10,000 grant which may be used toward business growth
- Enhanced access to Mastercard small business tools to help them grow their business; and
- 30-minute one-on-one virtual mentorship session with a Mastercard Small Business Mentor
Please note the following information will be required to complete the application:
- A concise description of your business
- A brief history of your business, including why you started your business and what makes it unique – including demonstration of the diversity and LGBTQIA+ inclusiveness within your business.
- A description of the impact your business has had your customers, employees, and community (other than the goods & services you provide)
- Number of employees
- 2022 business revenue
The questions must be completed on the Google Form. All applications are due on July 16, 2023 by 11:59PM ET. NYC Pride and Mastercard will review all entries and select three (3) winners.
- June 5, 2023: Application release
- July 16, 2023: Application deadline
- July 17, 2023 – August 4, 2023: Selection panel reviews applications
- August 7-11: Finalists notified
- September 18-22, 2023: Winners Notified
- October 2023: Winner Announcement
ALL DISPUTES WILL BE RESOLVED SOLELY BY BINDING ARBITRATION AND ENTRANTS WAIVE THE ABILITY TO BRING CLAIMS IN A CLASS ACTION FORMAT.
SPONSOR OBTAINS RIGHTS FROM ENTRANTS TO POST AND USE ANY AND ALL CONTENT SUBMITTED AS PART OF THE CONTEST, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER YOU ARE SELECTED AS A WINNER.
BY ENTERING THIS CONTEST, YOU AGREE TO THESE OFFICIAL RULES, WHICH ARE A CONTRACT, SO READ THEM CAREFULLY BEFORE ENTERING. WITHOUT LIMITATION, THIS CONTRACT INCLUDES INDEMNITIES TO THE RELEASED PARTIES FROM YOU AND A LIMITATION OF YOUR RIGHTS AND REMEDIES.
II. HOW THE CONTEST WORKS: The Contest will occur in two (2) phases as described below and includes an Entry Period (defined below) and a Virtual Business Pitch (defined below). At the end of the Entry Period, up to six (6) Finalists (defined below) will be identified, based on the judging procedure and criteria outlined below, to advance to the Virtual Business Pitch. At the end of the Virtual Business Pitch, the three (3) Finalists with the highest scores will be declared the Grand Prize winners and the remaining Finalists (up to three (3)) will be declared First Prize winners, as outlined below.
III. HOW TO ENTER: Visit https://forms.gle/kyWk13wfxjSaANVA8 (the “Website”) during the Entry Period and follow the instructions provided to complete and submit the entry form. The submitted entry form, inclusive of all required business information, business-related questions and nine (9) essay questions (each essay with a maximum of five-hundred (500) words), will collectively be referred to as an “Entry” hereafter. Website’s server must receive all Entries by 11:59:59 PM PT on 7/16/23. Limit one (1) Entry per person, per business and per email address, for the duration of the Entry Period. If Entrant submits more than one (1) Entry, all Entries received after the first Entry will be void. Once the Entry is completed and submitted, the Entry is final and may not be modified or edited. All Entries must meet the Entry Requirements set forth below. Those who do not follow all of the instructions, provide the required information in their entry form, or abide by these Official Rules or other instructions of Sponsor may be disqualified at Sponsor’s sole and absolute discretion. All Entries that are late, illegible, incomplete, damaged, destroyed, forged or otherwise not in compliance with the Official Rules may be disqualified from the Contest at Sponsor’s sole and absolute discretion. Entries generated by script, macro or other automated means and Entries by any means which subvert the Entry process are void. By registering, and clicking on the “Enter Contest” button, you certify that you acknowledge and are in compliance with these Official Rules, including, without limitation, all eligibility requirements. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any Entry that it determines, in its sole discretion, has violated any provision of these Official Rules as applicable, and its decision in this regard is final. Proof that you entered the Contest does not constitute evidence of receipt by Sponsor within the required deadline. All Entries and information become the property of the Sponsor and will not be acknowledged or returned. Assurance of delivery of Entries is the sole responsibility of the Entrant. In the event of a dispute as to the identity of any Entrant who submits an Entry, the Entry will be deemed submitted by the account holder of the email account from which it was sent but only if such person is otherwise eligible. The “account holder” is the person assigned an email address or username by the entity responsible for assigning it (e.g., Yahoo). Winners may be required to show proof of being the registered account holder. If a dispute cannot be resolved to the Sponsor’s satisfaction, the Entry will be deemed ineligible. Sponsor, Administrator and affiliated entities are not responsible for lost, misdirected, misplaced, stolen, tampered with, deleted, or invalid Entries.
All Entries must meet the following criteria (“Entry Requirements”), as determined within Sponsor’s final sole discretion:
- Entries that contain or otherwise infringe on any third-party names, trademarks, music, identities, copyrighted or patented material, and/or other material subject to third party rights are prohibited;
- Entries that include any reference to any patents and/or trade secrets of Sponsor or Released Parties and/or its competitors are prohibited;
- Entries that are obscene, offensive, contain any profanities, endorse any form of hate or hate group, or any language or images communicating messages inconsistent with the positive images to which Sponsor and/or Released Parties wishes to associate will be void;
- Entries cannot be sexually explicit or suggestive, unnecessarily violent or derogatory of any ethnic, racial, gender, religious, professional or age group, profane or pornographic, or contain nudity or any materially dangerous activity;
- Entries cannot promote alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco, firearms/weapons (or the use of any of the foregoing), any activities that may appear unsafe or dangerous, or any particular political agenda or message;
- Entries cannot contain disparaging remarks, defame, misrepresent, invade the publicity, third party rights and/or the privacy rights of Sponsor, Released Parties, their products or any trademarks or other intellectual property they own, other products or companies, or any person, living or deceased;
- Entries cannot contain trademarks owned by others, or advertise or promote any brand or product of any kind, or contain any personal identifiable information, such as personal names, email addresses, etc.;
- Entries cannot communicate messages inconsistent with the positive images and/or goodwill to which Released Parties associate; and
- Entries cannot be in violation of any law, rule, statute, regulation, or ordinance.
Sponsor reserves the right to void and disqualify any Entry not satisfying these requirements, as determined within Sponsor’s final sole discretion.
By submitting an Entry, you agree that: (i) the Entry does not violate any law, rule or regulation or any right of any third party, including those laws, rules, regulations, and rights related to copyrights, trademarks, publicity, or privacy, (ii) you have the right to grant the rights to the Entry as provided in these Official Rules, (iii) the Entry has not been published or submitted in any other competition; (iv) the Entry is your original work; (v) the Entry has not won previous awards; (vi) you have obtained permission from any person whose name or likeness is used in the Entry; and (vii) that publication of the Entry via various media, including, without limitation, social posting, will not infringe on the rights of any third party. You will indemnify, defend and hold harmless Released Parties from any claims to the contrary. Further, by submitting an Entry, you grant permission and a perpetual, non-exclusive, royalty-free, no-cost, worldwide, irrevocable right and license for Released Parties to publish, post, adapt, edit, display, exploit and/or modify or otherwise use the Entry and all images, text and materials included or depicted therein, in whole or in part, in any manner or medium now or hereafter known or devised (including, without limitation, CDs, streaming media, film, television, videocassettes, print, interactive devices, mobile media, Internet and on-line systems), throughout the universe and in any and all languages, including, without limitation, the right to display, reproduce, recreate, record, perform, exhibit, distribute, copy, edit, change, modify, add to, subtract from, re-title and adapt the same, to combine it with other material and otherwise use and exploit it without having to give any compensation or attribution to Entrants or any third party, except for the awarding of the prize(s) to the winners in this Contest. Entrants agree that during the Entry Period, they shall not make, and shall not permit, any other public use, display or distribution of their Entry, and they shall maintain all rights without encumbrances so that, if Sponsor desires, Entrants can assign all rights in and to their Entry if selected as a winner. Sponsor, and each of its successors, assigns and licensees, will have the right to make unlimited derivative works of Entries, to assign or transfer any or all of Sponsor’s granted rights and to grant unlimited, multiple-level sublicenses. Without limiting the foregoing, Sponsor will have the right to use the Entries submitted as part of the Contest, and all images, text and materials included or depicted therein (if any), in any merchandising, advertising, marketing, promotion or for any other commercial or non-commercial purpose. Entrants hereby forever waive and relinquish all “moral rights (droit moral)” now or hereafter recognized in connection with Entries submitted as part of the Contest. Entrants acknowledge that as a condition of participating in the Contest and/or being selected as a winner, Sponsor may request that the Entrant’s Entry, and any rights therein, be assigned to Sponsor and Entrants may be required to confirm such assignment by completing and submitting the Prize Acceptance Documents (defined below) (and any other documents reasonably required by Sponsor) or such Entrant will otherwise be disqualified from receiving his/her prize(s). Entrants must maintain the ability to assign all such rights to Sponsor free of any limitations, restrictions or third-party obligations. Entrants agree that Sponsor shall have the sole discretion in determining the extent and manner of use of Entries and are not obligated to use any Entry. Entrants agree that Sponsor, nor its agents, shall be responsible for return or preservation of the Entries submitted.
Entrant further agrees that submission of an Entry is gratuitous and made without restriction and will not place Sponsor and/or Released Parties under any obligation and that Sponsor and Released Parties are free to discuss or otherwise disclose the ideas contained in the Entry on a non-confidential basis to anyone or otherwise use the ideas without any additional compensation to Entrant. Each Entrant acknowledges that Entries are not being submitted in confidence or in trust to Sponsor and that no confidential or fiduciary relationship is intended or created. Each Entrant acknowledges that Sponsor and other Entrants may have created ideas and concepts contained in their Entries that may have familiarities or similarities to his/her own Entry, and that she will not be entitled to any compensation or right to negotiate with the Released Parties because of these familiarities or similarities. Notwithstanding any custom and practice in the industry to pay an individual for an idea (if any), nothing herein shall create an implied or express contract to compensate Entrants for their Entry and there is no obligation for any Released Party to pay or otherwise compensate Entrants for any of their ideas or materials in any communications with Sponsor, whatsoever. Entrant acknowledges that, by acceptance of their Entry, Released Parties do not waive any rights to use similar or related ideas previously known to Released Parties, or developed by its employees, or obtained from sources other than Entrant. Sponsor and/or Released Parties reserve the right to screen Entries, but may post Entries without editing or other prior review. Entrant acknowledges that Sponsor and/or Released Parties have no obligation to use or post any Entry that she submits. For all social media postings of Entries made by Sponsor and/or Released Parties, posting of such content is for entertainment purposes only and does not relate to winner selection. Entrant, by participating in the Contest, except where legally prohibited, grants the irrevocable permission for Sponsor and its designees to use his/her name, address (city and state), statements, social media handles, photograph, biographical information, voice and/or other likeness and prize information for advertising, trade and promotional purposes, without further compensation, in all media now known or hereafter discovered, worldwide in perpetuity, without notice or review or approval. Sponsor reserves the right to request from Entrant at any time proof that Entrant maintains all necessary rights in their Entry in order to grant Sponsor the rights required herein in a form acceptable to Sponsor. Failure to provide such proof may lead to, among other things, the Entrant being disqualified from the Contest.
No correspondence about Entries will be entered into, nor will Entries be acknowledged or returned. Incomplete Entries, Entries not responding to the theme, Entries that do not comply with the Entry Requirements, and/or Entries which may contain obscene, offensive, or any images or language communicating messages inconsistent with the positive images to which Sponsor and/or Released Parties wishes to associate will be void. Entries whose work includes the names, images, or likenesses of third parties or contains elements not owned by the participant (such as, but not limited to, depictions of persons, landmarks, trademarks or logos) must be able to provide legal releases for such use including Released Parties’ use of such Entry, in a form satisfactory to Sponsor, upon request. Proof of Entry does not constitute Sponsor’s proof of receipt. Entries that contain or otherwise infringe on any third-party names, trademarks, music, identities, copyrighted material, and/or other material subject to third party rights are prohibited. Subject to these Official Rules and except where otherwise prohibited by law, all winning Entries are deemed to be assigned to Sponsor and will not be returned. If required information is not included, Entry will be disqualified.
IV. FINALIST JUDGING PROCEDURE AND CRITERIA: All eligible Entries received during the Entry Period will be judged on the following criteria by Sponsor and its designees: 1) Viability and strength of business (0-30 points), 2) Level of impact the business is having on its customers, employees, and community, and 3) Potential for business growth (0-40 points). The six (6) Entries with the highest scores, as determined by the judges, in their sole discretion, will be deemed potential Finalists and will advance to the Virtual Business Pitch, subject to verification of eligibility and compliance with these Official Rules (see “Finalist Notification” section below). Sponsor reserves the right to select fewer than six (6) Finalists if, in its sole discretion, it does not receive a sufficient number of eligible and qualified Entries.
In the event of a tie, the tied Entries will be re-judged based on: Potential for growth (0-100 points). If there is still a tie, Sponsor will bring in a tie breaking judge to apply the same judging criteria to break the tie and determine the Finalists.
By participating, Entrants agree to abide by these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor and judges, which are final and binding in all matters relating to this Contest.
V. FINALIST NOTIFICATION: Potential Finalists will be determined approximately three (3) weeks following the completion of the Entry Period and will be notified by Administrator by telephone and/or email. Potential Finalists will be required to execute and return an Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability and (where legal) Publicity Release (collectively, “Prize Acceptance Documents”) and any other documents and third-party consents as may be required by Sponsor within five (5) business days of date of issuance of notification.
Finalists will be required to submit to a confidential criminal check to confirm eligibility & ensure that advancement to the Virtual Business Pitch by such person, or the use of any such person in advertising, promotion or publicity, will not pose a security threat or bring Released Parties into public disrepute, contempt, scandal, or ridicule, or reflect unfavorably on Released Parties as determined by Sponsor or the other Released Parties in their sole discretion, &, in such event, may result in disqualification. Noncompliance with any of the foregoing, failure to respond within the designated timeframe, the inability to contact a potential Finalist within a reasonable time period, or any notification being returned as undeliverable may result in disqualification and, at Sponsor’s discretion and time permitting, a runner-up being chosen. Finalist status is subject to verification of eligibility and compliance with these Official Rules. The Released Parties are not responsible for electronic communications that are undeliverable as a result of any form of active or passive filtering of any kind, or insufficient space in Entrant’s email account to receive email messages. Should a potential Finalist decide to decline his/her prize for any reason whatsoever or not respond to the prize notification by the applicable response deadline, Sponsor shall have no further obligation to that potential Finalist and an alternate Finalist may be selected based on the selection process above, if time permits.
VI. VIRTUAL BUSINESS PITCH: Upon verification of eligibility and compliance with these Official Rules, each Finalist will take part in a scheduled (and recorded) Virtual Business Pitch between 9/5/23 and 9/15/23. The interviewer(s) hosting the Virtual Business Pitch will be determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion, and the interviewer(s) will judge each Finalist individually based on the judging criteria as outlined above. The Virtual Business Pitch with each Finalist will be approximately the same length of time, and the questions asked of each will be the same.
Finalists are prohibited from inducing the interviewer(s) by fraudulent or inappropriate means, including, without limitation, offering prizes or other inducements and/or using any websites or online forums designed to induce the interviewer(s) to judge their answers higher or differently than the other Finalists, as defined by Sponsor, in its sole discretion.
All Virtual Business Pitch details, including, without limitation, the time and duration of the session, will be determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. Each Finalist will be required to attend the Virtual Business Pitch and make a professional appearance answering each of the questions presented by the interviewer(s) to the best of their ability and will be judged on their ability to answer the questions in a responsive and engaging manner. The Virtual Business Pitch will be recorded by Sponsor and may be distributed live by Sponsor, in its sole and absolute discretion and used for commercial and/or marketing purposes. All Finalists who participate in the Virtual Business Pitch irrevocably grant to Sponsor all footage rendered by them, and all ideas, content and materials provided by Finalists, in connection with the development, production and/or exploitation of print, graphic, audio and/or visual or other content, projects, productions, campaigns and/or programs. Without limiting the foregoing, Finalists further irrevocably give and grant to the Sponsor the right to adapt, change, edit, modify, add to, delete, combine with other materials, record, reproduce, distribute and otherwise exploit the same by any means now known or hereafter devised and irrevocably waive all so called “moral rights (droit moral) (where enforceable)”. The Virtual Business Pitch may not include any matter or material that violates these Official Rules. Sponsor reserves the right (in its sole discretion) to immediately disqualify and remove any Finalist who does not comply with these Official Rules. Sponsor will provide any additional details to Finalist at the time of Finalist notification about specifically what will be expected of each Finalist at the Virtual Business Pitch and any additional rules and procedures that will be applicable to the competition that will take place at the Virtual Business Pitch. All decisions by interviewer(s) at the Virtual Business Pitch, including interpretation of these Official Rules and related documents, are within the sole and absolute discretion of Sponsor and are final.
VII. WINNER SELECTION: At the conclusion of the Virtual Business Pitch, the three (3) highest ranked Finalists with the highest number of votes from the interviewer(s) will be determined the Grand Prize winners, and the remaining three (3) Finalists will be determined First Prize winners. Prize winners are subject to verification of eligibility and compliance with these Official Rules. In the event of a tie during the Virtual Business Pitch, such tied Finalist Entries will be re-judged (by a separate panel of judges determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion) based on their potential for growth. If a tie still exists, from among the remaining pool of tied Entrants, Entrants with highest score in the level of impact the business is having on its customers, employees, and community and then in the viability and strength of business (if and as necessary to break tie), will be declared the applicable winner (collectively, “tiebreaker”). If there is still a tie, Sponsor will bring in a tie breaking judge to apply the same judging criteria to break the tie and determine the winner(s).
All interviewer vote counting will be conducted at the direction, and in the sole discretion, of the Sponsor. Neither Sponsor, nor anyone acting on its behalf, is required to enter into communications with any Entrant regarding the Contest other than to notify the potential Finalists and/or Prize winners.
Prizes will be awarded to the principal owner of the small business, as submitted in the applicable Entry. If prize award is in conflict with small business policy or not feasible after Sponsor’s good faith effort to obtain verifiable small business principal owner contact details, prize will be forfeited and, at Sponsor’s discretion and time permitting, a runner-up may be selected. Neither Sponsor, nor anyone acting on its behalf, is required to enter into communications with any Entrant regarding the Contest other than to notify a potential Prize winner.
VIII. PRIZES: Three (3) Grand Prizes: Each Grand Prize winner will receive: (i) $10,000 awarded in the form of a check, issued to the prize winner’s registered name of business per the entry form, (ii) a thirty (30)-minute one-on-one virtual mentorship session with a Mastercard Small Business Mentor and (iii) enhanced access to Mastercard small business tools. Approximate retail value (“ARV”) of each Grand Prize is $10,000. Three (3) First Prizes: Each First Prize winner will receive the following: (i) one (1) $100 Mastercard Prepaid® card, and (ii) enhanced access to Mastercard small business tools. ARV of each First Prize: $100.
Mastercard Prepaid® Card restrictions apply: http://prepaidcarddisclosure.com/USAny additional details, including but not limited to, the time, date and exact individual to conduct virtual mentorship to be determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. Prize winners are required to comply with any and all applicable federal, state and local laws, and for any other fees or costs associated with the prize she receives. Prize winners will be solely responsible for all federal, state and/or local taxes, and for any other fees or costs associated with the prize(s) they receive, regardless of whether they, in whole or in part, are used. Grand Prize winners will be required to provide Sponsor with a valid social security number before the prize will be awarded for tax reporting purposes. An IRS Form 1099 may be issued in the name of each winner for the actual value of the prize received. The value of the prize awarded will be reported for tax purposes, as required by law. No transfer, assignment, or substitution of prize except by Sponsor, at its sole discretion, due to causes otherwise determined solely by Sponsor, and then for a prize of equal or greater value. Unclaimed prizes will be forfeited. Prizes, if legitimately claimed, will be awarded. TOTAL ARV OF ALL PRIZES AWARDED IN THIS CONTEST: $30,300.
X. PRIVACY AND OPT-IN: Your participation by your Entry constitutes your consent to participate in this Contest and consent for Released Parties to obtain, use, and share your Entry, name, business name, address, email and other details (collectively, “Contest Data”) for Contest administration purposes. For information regarding Sponsor’s privacy practices, please visit https://www.nycpride.org/privacy-policy-terms-and-conditions.