Small to medium North Canterbury businesses experiencing negative impacts due to COVID-19 can now apply for funding to access professional accounting services for cashflow forecasting advice and support. The Enterprise North Canterbury (ENC) Professional Services Grant will provide $400 towards the cost of cashflow forecasting advice from local professional accounting firms. In addition, businesses that engage one of ENC’s Professional Service Partners to carry out the services will receive an additional $400 worth of support directly from the partners. Businesses that wish to use their own accountants will still be eligible to access the $400 grant through ENC. The grant comes after a recent survey by ENC, ChristchurchNZ and The Chamber, in which more than 600 respondents from Canterbury businesses confirmed that cashflow concerns were top of mind during the COVID-19 lockdown. ENC Chief Executive Heather Warwick says, “Cashflow is the lifeblood of every business. We recognise that during these challenging and unprecedented times there is a need to support our SMEs, and to work together to do everything we can to ensure they are getting the expert advice and support they need. We are pleased we can offer this support thanks to the Waimakariri, Hurunui and Kaikoura District Councils and our local Professional Service Partners. Small to medium businesses make up a huge percentage of our local business community and we know many are suffering due to the effects of COVID-19. We encourage those businesses to come forward and apply for this grant to help them navigate this difficult time. Good advice and specialist input now can make all the difference.” To be eligible for the fund, businesses must: Be based in the Waimakariri, Hurunui or Kaikoura districts Be experiencing negative impacts due to COVID-19 Be a small to medium enterprise (between 3-15 staff members) Be a New Zealand registered commercial business To apply, business operators must fill in the application form which will go to the ENC Business Support Team. They will see if the business fits the criteria and contact the applicant to confirm the grant. Successful applicants can then contact their chosen accountant, to whom the $400 from ENC will have been paid. For more information or to apply for the fund visit www.northcanterbury.co.nz/professional-services-grant/ .