ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) -- Many small businesses who've re-opened their doors after mandatory coronavirus closures say they still don’t have the customers to continue to operate. The owner of Healing Hands Massage and Wellness Spa is among them.

“COVID-19 has really hit us hard,” said Army veteran Rick Evans, who added after transitioning out of the military he turned to massage therapy.

“Being in Iraq, I have severe PTSD so I need to be around a lot of peace and this is where I get a lot of peace in," said Evans. 

Massage therapy was so helpful that Evans made a career of it and opened his own spa, that was 12 years ago and the business was thriving. "I've been coming here for like four or five years. And, I’m like 30 minutes away so you know I’m supporting since I’m driving from the other side of town,” said longtime spa client Tyrian, but she is among the few willing to venture out for a massage

“The clients are concerned with the current epidemic and they’re just not coming in. we may have ten clients booked but 7 of those clients would cancel so basically we’re almost open for nothing,” added Evans.

He is not alone, many small business as are in a similar situation. On Monday, the CareSource Foundation donation of $180,000 to the restore ATL Fund, created by the metro Atlanta Chamber.

The fund will provide immediate gap assistance with grants as high as 10 thousand dollars black-owned businesses impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Evans filled out the application and is awaiting a response but says come Sunday he may not have a choice but to close his doors.

“My rent alone in this building is $4000 plus a month and that’s just rent that doesn’t include utilities and that doesn’t include playing employees so we had a big loss

To find out more about the grant program go to https://www.metroatlantachamber.com/restore-atl-fund

To help the company you can go https://gf.me/u/xhcuir

Copyright 2020 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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