Okay, as promised here are the details of the meeting last night with the Jewish Free Loan people. First of all I had to get 3 guarantors who were all willing to be responsible for the money, which was no easy feat. This loan would require monthly payments starting immediately, but at zero interest.So my appointment was for 7:30 last night. I arrived at 7:25. As I stepped into the doorway of the office I was met with a man behind a desk and 4 old white men in chairs, all staring at me. "Tera?" the man behind the desk said, "I just called you to see where you were". "Are you all waiting for me" I asked? Yup. This room full of people were all waiting for me. Gulp.
2 of the men and myself went into a small office and they told me that they would be asking me a bunch of questions and then after I leave they would meet with a committee and make a recommendation.
They asked and I answered questions about the business model, location, competition, menu, price point, and all of the finances.
I had cotton mouth the whole time.
They complimented the business plan several times and even went so far as to say that it was one of the best they've seen. Then they thanked me and told me I could call the next day after 11:00 am to find out if we got the money or not.
So I called like the manic person I am from 11 on until I finally got through.
WE GOT THE LOAN!!!
We're on the way!!
Wow, it's shaping up to be a pretty busy week. Here's what's happening/happened so far. I'll just put this in point form since it's hard for me to keep all of it straight!
1. Cassa booked our appointment for last night! That's the Jewish Free Loan. They are an organization who's mandate is to offer help to Jewish entrepreneurs (that's me!) with no interest on the loans. It's considered to be the highest form of charity, to help others help themselves. We had to provide the business plan, the application, three guarantor forms and a promissory note from those guarantors. I had to go alone since I'm the client - no Davina. Totally scary. More on that meeting in the next post.
2. CYBF meeting booked for Friday morning. We will have to present our business plan and basically defend our idea to two volunteers with the Canadian Youth Business Foundation. They will then give us feedback and we will have to make a bunch of changes in time for them to present it to the board on September 26th at which time we will find out if our business plan is really what the CYBF is looking for. So we really need to wow them.
3. The Daycare Subsidy people, who said I had virtually no chance whatsoever of getting a subsidy for September and only a miniscule chance NEXT September, called! They have a subsidy for me! Since both Duff and I need to be employed full time to be eligible for the subsidy, we have to go to a meeting also on September 26th to prove that I am a business owner. Basically I have to show them every piece of paper I've ever touched that's connected with Playful Grounds so that they don't think I'm trying to scam them. It's a really long list of stuff I have to provide.
4. One of the daycares that I'm on a waiting list for called and they have a spot for Kai! Now what are the odds of that? The call came not 24 hours after the subsidy call. Kai could be in daycare as early as October 1st. Down Guilt, down. There's a good little Guilt. Okay I'm fine. Just between being a woman, a mother and Jewish, I'm pretty much destined to be overwhelmed with guilt for my whole life.
5. Davina wrote her Food Handling Certificate Exam yesterday. She feels pretty good about it. Hopefully neither of us will poison anybody.
So it's one of those weeks of mad juggling of children between husbands, drop-in centre, and friend's places while coordinating transportation time, running from one meeting to another and just squeaking by. So basically, just another week in the life of a couple of moms trying to open a cafe.
Okay, it would seem that everyone in the financial world was on holiday for most of the summer, but they're back and things are starting to happen.
Loan number 1: There will be a meeting on September 26 during which a couple of people will present our case to a Board of Directors. Which means that we need to meet with those people between now and then to answer questions and essentially defend the Business Plan.
Loan number 2: The rep is back from holiday and is reading the business plan now, so hopefully we will get feedback within a few days.
Loan number 3: We have a meeting next Tuesday to defend business plan and generally be interrogated by loan number 3 people.
One version of the BP is at the print shop so we actually have something pretty in a non digital format.
Here we go!