Get Involved

Get Involved

MERIT relies on community support to provide our clients with the services and guidance they need to make their business dream a reality.

You can be a part of our efforts to fight poverty and support local small businesses! Volunteer, mentor one of our clients, shop at our alumni businesses, contribute directly to sustain the operation of our program, or sign-up for our monthly newsletter.

All of these contributions enable us to further our economic impact in Marion, Polk, and Yamhill Counties.


Help support our local community and someone’s entrepreneurial dream, by donating directly to MERIT. MERIT’s programs would not be possible without the generous support of individuals, foundations, local, and national grants.

Our goal is to provide business services to those individuals who cannot access traditional means of education and support for some reason. Your financial donation contributes to our mission by allowing us to continue providing services at no cost to these qualified individuals.

MERIT is a 501(c)(3) organization. Donations to MERIT are tax deductible.

Donations can also be made out to MicroEnterprise Resources, Initiatives & Training and mailed to:

PO Box 626
Salem, OR 97306

In-Kind Contributions

In-kind contributions are always welcome and needed by our program and participants. Items of interest for our participants include office furniture, display cases, office supplies, computers and related technology.

Services such as graphics, accounting or bookkeeping can also assist emerging business.

For more information about making an in-kind contribution, call Genevieve Sheridan, Executive Director at 503.584.7314.


Do you have business experience and want to use your expertise to give back to your community? Volunteer with MERIT to keep local businesses thriving and have a direct impact on the fulfillment of another person’s dreams. The time commitment is as much or as little as you want.

Volunteering with MERIT helps keep local businesses thriving and has a direct impact on the fulfillment of another person’s dreams. The time commitment can be as much or as little as you want.

Bilingual volunteers are especially appreciated!

Current volunteer opportunities:

  • Business Development Assistant
  • Web Content & Social Media Manager
  • Program Assistant
  • Journalist
  • Industry & Market Research Specialist
  • Guest Speaker
  • Curriculum Developer
  • Business Mentor
  • Business Law Advisor
  • Business Financial Advisor

Any questions or want to get involved?

For more information, contact us today and we will be in touch with you shortly. We appreciate that you want to help us serve our entrepreneurial community! We’d love to get connected with you!

Contact Sandi Oja at or call (503) 584-7314 for questions about getting involved with MERIT!

Latest News


MERIT to Launch Second Phase of Financial Empowerment Academy

Salem, Oregon – Tuesday February 20, 2018 – In a motivating influence for the Willamette Valley community, MERIT (Micro Enterprise Resource Initiatives and Training) continues providing comprehensive financial and business resources for local business owners and families.

MERIT is a 501(c)3 non-profit, located in downtown Salem’s Center for Business and Industry, and has been helping determined individuals blossom into prosperous business owners in our community for over 13 years. True to their philosophy, MERIT has been a resource in providing training and workshops for local entrepreneurs and business owners who wish to take their ideas to the next level.

Through Initiatives such as group classes, IDA’s (3 to 1 matched savings), lending circles and coaching; MERIT has helped seed the foundations of main street businesses throughout the Willamette Valley.


Our Funding Partners

Merit Funders Logos - NALCAB
Merit Funders Logos -Chemeketa Community College
Merit Funders Logos -Northwest Area Foundation v2
Merit Funders Logos Ford Family Foundation
Merit Funders Logos -Wells Fargo v2