FLASH Drive!by Mary Clymer on July 7, 2020
Supporting local business five dollars at a time.
For many small businesses this is a challenging time. When they were forced to shut their doors back in March we knew things were serious and would greatly affect our economy. Over the past three months we all have made necessary changes to our lives and how we do business.
This is a time of extreme hardship for virtually all small businesses. Because of this many loyal customers want to do what they can to help their go-to local spots cope with the effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Businesses are getting creative in finding new sources of revenue after closing their brick-and-mortar locations or switching to delivery, takeout, and virtual services. Customers are also getting creative in seeking ways to support their favorites. This includes turning to social fundraising platforms to give cash directly to local businesses so they can continue to pay their staff, cover rent, and provide some modified level of service when possible.
The Flash Drive is Born
The Flash Drive is the Renton Chambers answer to help these businesses. You’ve probably noticed mention of it on our facebook page and were curious. A business name you recognize flashes up every couple of days, giving you the opportunity to give a little and help a lot.
We all know that so many businesses right now are either shut down or very limited to what they can offer, so that is where this idea started. We want people to continue to band together to be able to give to these businesses in a larger capacity while having fun doing so.
How it Works
The idea is to collect money in $5.00 increments. Then use that money to buy gift cards from the business we chose to support each day. After 48 hours the Chamber randomly selects between the people who donated to that business to receive a gift card from the featured business in an amount of $20-$100. The gift card amount will depend on the amount of money raised. So the gift cards could be higher or lower depending on how much the community gets involved. The Chamber will spotlight a different business beginning each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
That means you have 48 hours to support each flash drive. Two days dedicated to each business. After the spotlighted business has had their two day highlight the chamber will take the funds raised and purchase the gift cards directly from that place of business. The names will be randomly selected from those of you who donated. If your name is randomly chosen you will hear from the Chamber the day following the highlight.
To break it down. If you donated to the business spotlighted on Monday, you will find out if you were randomly selected on Wednesday. Wednesday’s highlighted business winners will be posted on Friday, and Friday’s donation selection winners will be notified the following Monday.
On top of all the fun, one lucky recipient will receive a variety of gift cards and goodies from a mix of the featured businesses highlighted during the month. That means that just because you may not have been chosen randomly for a gift card during the two day flash drive, your name is still in the bucket for a randomly selected array of gift cards.
By now you're probably wondering how you can donate and start helping all the wonderful local businesses in this flash drive. It’s simple
Send your donation of $5.00 or any five dollar increment to either
PayPal - paypal.me/rentonchamber
Venmo - firstname.lastname@example.org
After sending your kind donation comment on the flash drive post. Include in the post the amount and the app you went through. This helps the Chamber keep track of all the details, and helps to ensure the featured business gets all the proceeds. It also allows the community to see how much is being raised.
Now if you are selected, you have the option of using it yourself or having it donated to a first responder, a 2020 grad or one of the exceptional volunteers in our community. The choice is yours.