EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A community conversation centered on supporting LGBTQ+ businesses was held in Easthampton Wednesday evening.

The event was put on by Commonwealth Corporation. Attendees told 22News they wanted to get advice from business leaders within this community, in an effort to grow their establishments.

“Being an entrepreneur can be a very lonely journey, being an LGBTQ+ entrepreneur can be even lonelier, said Angie Montalvo-Greene, engagement director of the Massachusetts LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

This roundtable discussion in Easthampton helped shed light on the barriers these business owners face.

“Whether its resources, access to capital, or just understanding how to run a business, and in the minority community it is elevated,” said Terrell Joyner, a business coach for RJ Consulting.

Among the struggles for local entrepreneurs… financial literacy.

“It’s hard to ask for that help. It’s hard to feel like you deserve that help and it’s hard to tap someone’s shoulder and say, ‘hey, we need some advice,'” said Isa Wang, co-founder of Gamut Pins.

“I am living my authentic life and my authentic self, and I look at that, and I say that to my clients… I want to make sure that they feel comfortable and we provide a warm area for them,” said Ron Molina-Brantely, Vice President Relationship Manager of Berkshire Bank.

Chief of Staff Xiomara Alban DeLobato of WesternMass Economic Development Council says resources need to be shared with these smaller businesses, “We are really focused on that resources are shared, back and forth, whether its how we do business with our vendors and small businesses. Also, we want to leverage this corporate entity and this large business influence, and how to better serve the community that we are apart of.”

Massachusetts LGBT Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its official grand opening in Easthampton on November 10th.