NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – New York City has launched a new campaign to help New Yorkers help small businesses struggling in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn was joined by other elected leaders at a small bakery in DUMBO to announce a new promotional initiative aimed at driving shoppers to local businesses.
WCBS 880′s Alex Silverman reports
“These stories will be featured on television, radio and bus shelter ads,” Quinn told reporters including WCBS 880′s Alex Silverman. “We want to make sure that they know that maybe not every business in every neighborhood is open today. But tomorrow more businesses will be open, and the day after that, more businesses will be open.”
The initiative, in partnership with the local business review website Yelp, will feature small business owners sharing their experiences after Sandy.
The co-owner of One Girl Cookies, where the news conference was held, said her store was badly damaged in the storm.
“What we found was pretty much a disaster scene,” Dawn Casale told Silverman.
But Casale said the doors to the bakery were open again 12 days after Sandy due to diligent work from the entire staff.
“Then there’s a moment of ‘let’s mobilize, start working towards reopening,’” she said.
The city’s Small Business Services commissioner said One Girl Cookies served as a beacon of hope to small businesses all across the five borough.
“It carried as an inspiration in so many different neighborhoods,” commissioner Rob Walsh said. “Go to these impacted neighborhoods. Whatever you can do to put a spotlight on some of these small businesses that went above and beyond to open up, please get the word out about them.”
The bakery reported nearly $100,000 worth of damage. The owners said they are slowly working to recoup their losses.
“When they make that choice, ‘oh, we’re going to go and get stuff from our local businesses,’ it makes a huge difference,” One Girl Cookies co-owner David Crofton told Silverman.
There is also an interactive small business map on the partnership’s website, “so that you can see and plan before you go out what’s going to be open,” Quinn said.
Have you been supporting small businesses more than usual in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy? Share your comments below…