By Melody Van Camp

Aside from being appointed Mayor, I’m also a small business owner. For 25 years, I’ve been in the sewing business, through the boom and the bust years, mostly the bust!

But as the shopping climate changes, through the Internet or going out of town, in order to succeed, we must keep pace with the change. It’s called survival…

The value and the role small businesses play in our economy is sometimes underestimated. They are in fact small. But the truth is, there’s nothing small about the impact they have on our economy. Not only do small businesses help the community financially. but they are more apt to donate and give back to the community that supports them. They also donate twice as much to an organization than the larger “big box stores.”

Tough economic times have accelerated the need for donations. Several times a week, it seems someone is looking for a donation or I get the phone call for a pledge. At times I’ve had folks who have never patronized my shop come in and ask for a donation.

While shopping at local businesses, you can get the personal touch of an owner who cares about your wants and needs. Remember, they are the ones that support your cause, even when they can’t afford it.

Forget those long lines at Walmart or fighting the traffic in the big city! Think of the local businesses first before you spend that dollar out of town and remember who’s donating.