Since the threat and negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic has cast its net over most local small businesses there is a natural response for some small business enterprises to find ways to decrease expenses that are deemed “nice to have” as opposed to “need to have”. Memberships such as the one they hold with their local Chambers of Commerce may be perceived to fit that “nice to have” category line item. I’m writing to advise you not to cancel that Chamber membership due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is the one time that your involvement in the Chamber is the most valuable. So read on.
Many of you ask, “what does the Chamber do for our businesses and our community?” The Chamber has an important role in representing our businesses and fighting for the rights of employers. Our large voice is stronger than the small voice of individual small businesses. Whether it’s local taxation policies or the availability of meaningful financial supports during a global pandemic, we advocate for the health of our businesses as well as the broader health of the community. Small business remains the backbone of Weyburn’s economic and social prosperity and the Weyburn Chamber of Commerce is working diligently behind the scenes to preserve that.
For those that aren’t already a member of a Chamber of Commerce the question may also be asked; “How can joining the Chamber help my business?” Right now may be the most important time for you to be a member of your local Chamber of Commerce. Navigating these troubling times, understanding various financial supports offered by various levels of government and planning how your business can pivot to withstand the crisis is where the Chamber can provide valuable resources and leadership. Again, advocating your concerns and issues to higher levels of government is what we do best through both the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. No issue is too small and you can’t put a price tag on these efforts.
The Chamber of Commerce provides our members with excellent programming, resources, benefits, training, networking opportunities, and advocacy for literally pennies a day. This is an investment into the future viability of your business which is also an investment into the future of our community.
Your Chamber of Commerce strives to balance the needs of the business community with the needs of the general community. Our goal is to help all businesses survive and thrive through tough economic times. We are all in this together and together we stand.
Twila Walkeden, executive director
Weyburn Chamber of Commerce