A proposed cafe and juice bar Northside Shack may move into a location on Seacoast Drive or in Silver Strand Plaza next month if a funding goal for the business to receive a loan is met by Jan. 20.
Owner and organic food champion Pamela Olvera has tried to make her vision of a healthy cafe for IB for years.
Attempts to get funding with a traditional bank loan were denied, a previous Kickstarter campaign also failed. Finally Kiva Zip, a site that allows individuals to make loans to small businesses, and Olvera became the first Kiva Zip supported entrepreneur in South San Diego County.
To receive a $5,000 loan and open by Feb. 1, Northside Shack must raise an additional $2,700 by Jan. 20.
Thus far the cafe has received loans from Knight Foundation Detroit and more than 75 individual donors from North America, Europe, Malta, Israel and Australia, according to the Kiva website.
Kiva Zip is a pilot program that supports peer-to-peer loans to small business ventures in the United States and Kenya. Unlike crowd funding ventures that ask for donations, Olvera will be required to repay the zero percent interest loan within 24-30 months.
If the business opens on Seacoast Drive it may replace The Bridge at 874 Seacoast Dr.
"We don’t really have any healthy eating options in Imperial Beach," Olvera told U-T San Diego.
South County residents are more likely to die than people from any other part of San Diego as a result of poor nutrition, smoking and a lack of physical activity and diseases like cancer, diabetes, heart disease or strokes and respiratory illnesses like asthma.
Northside Shack is the sort of business that could go a small way to make IB a great place, Councilman Ed Spriggs told U-T San Diego.
Imperial Beach environmental and conservation group WiLDCOAST endorsed Northside Shack in order for the business to receive a Kiva Zip loan.
"Imperial Beach is one of only blue-collar beach towns left in Southern California and is located just north of the U.S.-Mexico Border. The Northside Shack is exactly the kind of business this cool little beach town needs," said WiLDCOAST Executive Director Serge Dedina in an endorsement of Northside Shack.
Click here to visit Northside Shack's website.