In Connecticut, over 600 restaurants have permanently closed since March.
Restauranteurs and small business owners are doing whatever they can to keep their doors open, yet for many, the restrictions make it impossible to continue.
Most of us here are entrepreneurs who want to see our communities flourish. Here are five ways you can help small businesses in your community:
You can start a gift card rally, encouraging others to buy gift cards from local restaurants and shops, which are then donated to people in need. If you are in Connecticut, head to The Gift Card Project to learn how you can be involved. If you live somewhere else, you can begin a project or encourage people to buy gift cards. When you can, buy gift cards yourself and donate them to people who could use a boost.
Create content and spread the message for small businesses and restaurants that need help. Whether you have professional equipment or just a phone, online content highlights the safety precautions businesses have in place, as well as the great work they are doing in your community.
You can still help if you can’t create content or don’t have extra money to spend on gift cards. Most small businesses are short-staffed or restricted in other ways. Reach out and ask about volunteer opportunities to learn what they need help with.
Learn what is trending in your area and use the hashtags. In Connecticut, there’s the hashtag #savectrestaurants, and #supportlocal is trending across the country. You can also share posts and stories from local businesses to help get their content seen. Make sure your actions match with what you are sharing online: avoid big box stores when you can, and encourage others to do the same.
Finally, let your local leaders know about it. If you live in an area where small business entrepreneurs have been carrying the burden for everybody else, let the leaders of your community know they need additional support.
There are plenty of ways to help local entrepreneurs and businesses, no matter your personal situation. These are the people, stores, and restaurants that make up our communities – and if they can’t survive, what type of place would it be to live and work?