“Currently the chamber staff is working from home, most of us, it’s been about a week and a half now for the majority of us. And we are basically reaching out to every client, every attraction, every hotel just trying to let them know we’re still here for them, seeing what we can do for them. We have a new president which we got to meet via zoom at our first meeting so he said we’re not checking membership cards at the door, we want to help any business right now so really I thought that was great because we just want everybody to be okay on the other side of this,” Suzanna Aguirre with the San Angelo Convention and Visitors Bureau said.
San Angelo Chamber of Commerce staff members are compiling information that is going to be necessary for business owners and customers.
“We have on our website a specific tab for COVID-19 where people can go to get information if they’re needing help financially for businesses, on the CVB side we’re trying to keep up with the restaurants seeing what the hours are and who is open to try to help them stay in business as well,” Aguirre said.
However, simply staying in business could seem like a daunting task. With meetings, conferences, and events being cancelled, the entire city’s economy is taking a hit.
“All those cancellations in meetings have resulted in cancellations for our hotels for our venues. There’s so many people effected, decorators as far as linens and all of that, and the essentials that people need when they come to town, shopping, gas, food,” Aguirre said.
However, ordering food for takeout or delivery from local restaurants, being active with them on social media, and thinking about their futures as well can go a long way. Buying gift cards to places like restaurants, coffee shops, and hair salons will also help them stay afloat.
Aguirre says the overall goal is to make sure businesses stay in business and the community is supporting one another.
“Basically, we just want to be safe. This community is so proactive, we’re so fortunate with our city leader that they’re willing to make the sacrifices that are needed for us to come out of this. And I think we see that in the numbers. So far, we’ve seen that we have a few but not as many as other places. I think that is part of all of us sticking together and people being willing to make these efforts to help one another. I love that about San Angelo. We just always come together and help each other out and try to do what’s best for our community so hang in there!” Aguirre said.
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