weVENTURE Makes Shopping Local Easy This Holiday Season
The holiday shopping season is often the most profitable time of year for many small businesses, especially those in retail. However, this year it is quite literally make or break for many local small businesses. We have heard from so many clients that their ability to survive into 2021 and beyond depends on how well they do this holiday season.
So how can you help?
I know in our hearts many of us want to support local businesses, but it may be a challenge this year to shop in person if you are choosing to avoid the risk of gathering in public places. Additionally, it takes time (that many of us don’t have) to search for local businesses selling what you are looking for online. It can be easier to just go to Amazon.com or a similar site and do a quick search for what we need. However, if you feel the same way we do about supporting local business and our local economy, it’s worth taking the time to shop local — whether in person or online.
To save you time and make it super easy to keep your hard-earned money in Brevard County, we’ve done the hard work for you! We (weVENTURE) have compiled a directory of Women-Owned Local Small Businesses for you to use for your holiday shopping pleasure.
Women’s Business Centers, like weVENTURE, help level the playing field for female entrepreneurs, who continue to lag behind their male counterparts in terms of access to education, capital and professional support needed to grow their business. This is why it’s critically important for us to do what we can to keep them up and running during challenging times like these.
According to the 2019 AMEX State of Women-Owned Business Report, the vast majority of female-owned businesses are solo-preneurs with no employees. Further, in response to lower pay at their place of employment, more women than ever — particularly women of color — are starting up “side” businesses. When looking at specific minority groups over the last five years, growth in “side entrepreneurship” is up 99% among African American women, 63% for Asian American women and 46% for Latina/Hispanic women.
And of course, since the COVID-19 pandemic started, unemployment numbers have soared, prompting more women than ever to find ways to monetize their hobbies and skills. As a result, we are seeing an exciting boom in local entrepreneurial ventures, which we love. That is what inspired us to compile this directory.
Supporting female entrepreneurship empowers women to achieve financial stability for themselves and their families, helping combat poverty and hunger right here in our local community. Shopping local this year isn’t just a tagline, it is literally a way to reinvest in your community.
So we invite you to visit our Holiday Shopping Guide at weventure.fit.edu and support as many local small businesses as you can. Happy hunting!
To see the directory of women-owned local businesses and learn more about weVENTURE programs, visit www.weventure.fit.edu or call 321-674-7007.
Kathryn Rudloff is the executive Director of weVENTURE at Florida Tech. weVENTURE accelerates growth for entrepreneurs by providing customized coaching, business education, mentorship and networking programs. weVENTURE is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.
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