Submitted press release
Kankakee County (April 9, 2020) – The Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce, Manteno Chamber of Commerce and the Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau are joining chambers and small businesses across the state of Illinois to launch the ‘IL’ove Local campaign to encourage people to support local businesses during the week of April 11 – 18, 2020, led by the Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (IACCE).
“Our local businesses are the heart and soul of this community. People from our local and neighboring communities visit for the unique products and services they provide,” explains Sarah Marion, President & CEO of the Manteno Chamber. “We want our local businesses to survive.”
The statistics are staggering for small businesses following natural disasters: According to FEMA, roughly 40 to 60% of small businesses that close after a disaster never reopen.
“People across the state are staying home to save lives. We want to ensure that small businesses can save their livelihoods,” said Emily Poff, Executive Director of the Kankakee County Chamber. “We are asking neighbors to put their money where their heart is and support the ‘IL’ove Local initiative.”
Each dollar spent at a local, independent business returns 50 times more money to the local economy than shopping at a mega e-retailer. Across Illinois, small businesses provide communities with good jobs, quality service, and the character that makes cities, towns and neighborhoods feel like home.
From Chicago to Carbondale and the Mississippi to Lake Michigan, Illinois chambers are coming together sharing resources, building community and uniting to create the week-long initiative designed to drive business to our small businesses. Collectively small, local businesses are the states’ largest employer. Small businesses employ more than half of the working class in the United States.
WHAT SHOPPERS CAN DO:
- Follow social distancing guidelines, and stay home as much as possible.
- Buy local. Find out if your favorite local store has an online shop or reach out to them to find out how you can purchase now for pick up later.
- Buy gift cards to use later.
- Take online virtual classes from your favorite local business.
- Get takeout/delivery – Tip big!
- Consider buying lunch/dinner for the first responders. You will help your local restaurants and the people who serve us all.
- Buy gift cards from local businesses for your favorite waiter/waitress/bartender.
- Like and share your favorite local businesses social media post.
- Once you’ve purchased a gift card or meal, take a picture of it, share it on your social media and hashtag #IloveIllinois OR use #ShopSmall #ShopIllinois #IllinoisStrong #AllInIllinois
- Maintain your memberships.
- Check out chamber links and directories for a one-stop shop in shopping small, of all the ways to support independent Illinois businesses in your backyard.
The ‘IL’ove Local campaign is a partnership led by the Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives, with participation from chambers of commerce across Illinois in support of small business across the state. The Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives was established in 1915 and serves more than 130 chambers of commerce and their professional staff throughout the state. IACCE supports the development of chamber professionals by creating opportunities for growth and recognition.
More information on the ‘IL’ove Local campaign can be found at IllinoisLoveLocal.com.