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Local Assistance

SBA works with a number of local partners to counsel, mentor, and train small businesses.

SCORE Chapters

The SCORE Association, supported by SBA, is a nonprofit association of thousands of volunteer business counselors throughout the U.S. and its territories.

SCORE members are trained to serve as counselors, advisors and mentors to aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners. Here are some of the ways you can connect with SCORE and get free business advice:

  • Email a mentor: Choose a mentor online and get answers to your business questions virtually
  • Visit Your Local SCORE Office: Make an appointment with a mentor for in-person advice or attend a business workshop
  • Online Workshops: Participate in free, online workshops or register for small business webinars
  • E-Newsletters: Subscribe to SCORE’s e-Newsletters and get free business tips and read interviews with small business experts


More about SCORE

  • There are hundreds of SCORE chapters in urban, suburban and rural communities
  • SCORE was formed in 1964 and millions of Americans have used SCORE services
  • SCORE can help if you are trying to start a business or if you need help with your existing business


Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) provide assistance to small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the United States and its territories. SBDCs help entrepreneurs realize the dream of business ownership and help existing businesses remain competitive in a complex, ever-changing global marketplace. SBDCs are hosted by leading universities and state economic development agencies, and funded in part through a partnership with SBA.

SBDC advisors provide aspiring and current small business owners a variety of free business consulting and low-cost training services including: business plan development, manufacturing assistance, financial packaging and lending assistance, exporting and importing support, disaster recovery assistance, procurement and contracting aid, market research help, 8(a) program support, and healthcare guidance.

With dozens of host networks branching out with hundreds of service delivery points throughout the U.S., the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, American Samoa and the U.S. Virgin Islands, SBDC assistance is available virtually anywhere.

Women's Business Centers (WBCs) represent a national network of nearly 100 educational centers throughout the United States and its territories, which are designed to assist women in starting and growing small businesses. WBCs seek to "level the playing field" for women entrepreneurs, who still face unique obstacles in the business world.

SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership (OWBO) oversees the WBC network, which provides entrepreneurs (especially women who are economically or socially disadvantaged) comprehensive training and counseling on a variety of topics in several languages.

Doing business with the government is a big step to growing your business. Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) provide local, in-person counseling and training services for you, the small business owner. They are designed to provide technical assistance to businesses that want to sell products and services to federal, state, and/or local governments. PTAC services are available either free of charge, or at a nominal cost. PTACs are part of the Procurement Technical Assistance Program, which is administered by the Defense Logistics Agency.

What can a PTAC do for you?

Determine if your business is ready for government contracting Pursuing government contracts is a challenge, and can be burden for your company if you do not have the resources to handle a contract. A PTAC representative can sit with you one-on-one and determine if your business is ready, and help position you for success.

Help you register in the proper places There are numerous databases to register with to get involved with the government marketplace, including the Department of Defense’s System for Award Management (SAM), GSA Schedules, and other government vendor sites. A PTAC representative can help you determine where and how to register.

See if you are eligible in any small business certifications Some government contracts are set aside for certain businesses with special certifications, such as woman-owned, small disadvantaged businesses and HUBZone. A PTAC representative can help you obtain these certifications.

Research past contract opportunities A PTAC representative can look into past contracts to see what types of contracts have been awarded to businesses like yours.

In addition, a PTAC can help you identify and bid on a contract, and if you are awarded the contract, measure your performance and help with contract audits.

The Veterans Business Outreach Program (VBOP) is 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. SBA has 16 organizations participating in this cooperative agreement and serving as Veterans Business Outreach Centers (VBOC).

Services Provided by the Centers

Pre-Business Plan Workshops VBOCs conduct entrepreneurial development workshops dealing specifically with the major issues of self-employment, which include using the Internet to develop and expand businesses. Each client has the opportunity to work directly with a business counselor.

Concept Assessments VBOCs assist clients in assessing their entrepreneurial needs and requirements.

Business Plan Preparations VBOCs assist clients in developing and maintaining a business plan. The business plan includes such elements as the legal and organizational structure of the business; equipment requirements and costs; strategic and financial plans; and market research.

Comprehensive Feasibility Analysis VBOCs help identify and analyze strengths and weaknesses of the business plan to increase the probability of success. Analysis results are used to revise the strategic planning portion of the business plan.

Entrepreneurial Training and Counseling VBOCs, working with other SBA resource partners, conduct entrepreneurial training and counseling sessions specifically for service-disabled veteran entrepreneurs.

Mentorship When needed, VBOCs conduct on-site visits with clients to ensure they are following their business plans. Additionally, VBOCs review monthly financial statements to determine if the business plan needs to be changed to achieve targeted goals.

Other Business Developmental Related Services VBOCs also provide assistance and training in topics such as exporting, franchising, marketing, accounting and more.

VBOC Locations and Areas of Coverage

Exporting can enable small businesses to increase sales and profit, reduce dependence on the domestic market and stabilize seasonal fluctuations. If you're ready to explore exporting, Export Assistance Centers, located in major metropolitan areas throughout the United States, can help.

Each U.S. Export Assistance Center is staffed by professionals from SBA, Department of Commerce, Export-Import Bank and other public and private organizations. Together, their mission is to help small and medium sized businesses compete in today's global marketplace by providing export assistance.

These U.S. Export Assistance Centers have SBA representatives who are available to help you with all of your SBA export financing needs: Atlanta, GA; Arlington, VA; Boston, MA; Irvine, CA; Sacramento, CA; Los Angeles, CA; Charlotte, NC; Chicago, IL; Cleveland, OH; Dallas/Fort Worth, TX; Denver, CO; Detroit, MI; Miami, FL; Minneapolis, MN; New Orleans, LA; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; Portland, OR; Seattle, WA; St. Louis, MO

Certified Development Companies (CDCs) are nonprofit corporations certified and regulated by the SBA, that work with participating lenders to provide financing to small businesses. There are 270 CDCs nationwide, each covering a specific geographic area.

To find your nearest CDC, enter your zip code in our Local Asssistance tool and select "Certified Development Company" in the "Refine by Partner" section on the left.

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1389 Highway 90 West Suite 170
Lake City, FL 32025
Phone: 386-752-2000


5410 S. Florida Avenue, #3
Lakeland, FL 33813
Phone: 863-619-5783


3810 S. Lecanto Highway
Lecanto, FL 34461
Phone: 352-249-1236


Melbourne Professional Complex 1600 Sarno Road, Suite 205
Melbourne, FL 32935
Phone: 321-254-2288
Fax: 321-254-2288


111 NW 1st Street #1941
Miami, FL 33130
Phone: 786-425-9119
Fax: 305-536-5058


900 Goodlette Road North
Naples, FL 34102
Phone: 239-430-0081
Fax: 239-430-0082


6014 US Highway 19 Suite 302
New Port Richey, FL 34652
Phone: 727-842-4638
Fax: 727-841-7266


Fashion Square Mall, Suite A-20 3201 E. Colonial Drive
Orlando, FL 32803
Phone: 407-420-4844
Fax: 407-420-4849


1777 Tamiami Trail Suite 411
Port Charlotte, FL 33948
Phone: 941-743-6179


2801 Fruitville Road Suite 280
Sarasota, FL 34237
Phone: 941-955-1029
Fax: 941-955-5581


7402 N. 56th Street Suite 465
Tampa, FL 33617
Phone: 813-988-1435
Fax: 813-914-4027


11962 CR 101 Suite 302, # 259
The Villages, FL 32162
Phone: 352-399-0050


500 Australian Avenue South Suite 115
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Phone: 561-833-1672
Fax: 561-833-1470


233 Peachtree Road NE Harris Tower, Suite 1900
Atlanta, GA 30303
Phone: 404-331-0121
Fax: 404-331-0108


101 13th Street Wachovia Bank Building
Columbus, GA 31901
Phone: 706-596-8331


111 E. Liberty Street Suite 103
Savannah, GA 31401
Phone: 912-652-4335
Fax: 912-652-4184


500 Ala Moana Blvd. Suite 1-306A
Honolulu, HI 96813
Phone: 808-547-2700
Fax: 808-541-2950


380 E. Parkcenter Blvd. Suite 330
Boise, ID 83706
Phone: 208-334-1696 x338
Fax: 208-334-9353


2300 N. Yellowstone Highway Suite 119
Idaho Falls, ID 83401
Phone: 208-523-1022
Fax: 208-528-7127


1444 N. Farnsworth Avenue
Aurora, IL 60505
Phone: 630-375-6026
Fax: 630-852-3127


402 N. Hershey Road
Bloomington, IL 61704
Phone: 309-664-0549
Fax: 309-663-8270


303 W. Kirby Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
Phone: 217-359-1791
Fax: 217-359-1809


Eastern Illinois Univ., 3106 Lumpkin Hall 600 Lincoln Avenue
Charleston, IL 61920


Citigroup Center 500 W. Madison Street, #1150
Chicago, IL 60661
Phone: 312-353-7724
Fax: 312-886-4879


Milliken University 1184 W. Main Street
Decatur, IL 62522
Phone: 217-424-6297
Fax: 217-424-3523


Alden Hall 5800 Godfrey Road
Godfrey, IL 62035
Phone: 618-467-2280
Fax: 618-466-8289


1690 Newtowne Drive
Kankakee, IL 60901
Phone: 815-427-9818
Fax: 815-427-9818


3000 W. DeYoung Street #586
Marion, IL 62959
Phone: 618-453-6654
Fax: 618-453-5040


622 19th Street
Moline, IL 61265
Phone: 309-797-0082
Fax: 309-757-5435


Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce 100 SW Water Street
Peoria, IL 61602
Phone: 309-676-0755
Fax: 309-676-7534