If you’re like me, you may be finding it hard to believe we’re already into the holiday season. It feels like only last month we were just learning about COVID-19 and wondering what the implications would be for our daily lives. It’s crazy to think that we’ve been enduring this pandemic and the recession it’s created for almost 12 months now!
During that time, businesses have been asked again and again to help stem the tide of new cases, to shut down or reduce operations or enforce mask mandates so that we can flatten the curve and protect our communities. Time and time again, our local businesses have stepped up to answer those calls, often at great cost.
This is why the BuyAlaska program was created, to give back to those businesses that are doing so much for us. When you shop local, your dollars go towards keeping our economy going, preserving jobs, and saving the businesses that make our communities so vibrant and unique. This holiday season more than ever before, we need to come together as Alaskans and make sure our money goes towards a good cause.
With social distancing and increased shutdowns going into effect, I know how tempting it is to do your shopping online. There’s a reason Amazon is so successful: they have a lot of options and they make it easy to spend money. What they don’t do is sponsor your kids' sports team, or employ your neighbor, or help to diversify your local economy. Local businesses do that.
I hope that you will all join us at BuyAlaska in supporting local businesses any way you can. Promote them on your social media, go out and buy your gifts from local vendors, get gift cards from businesses that can’t operate during a pandemic. The more support we can give our businesses, the better off we’ll all be when this is all over.
Alaska SBDC Executive Director