Jennifer Bolanos is the founder of Via Raiz, a shop with a curated collection of the finest textiles, home goods and gifts created by highly skilled makers and innovative designers of Mexico. Entering her ninth month of pregnancy, she made the decision to close her brick and mortar shop for the time being. She is offering free delivery on online purchases to customers in the Portland Metro area and also has gift cards available for sale on line. Visit her beautiful website at viaraiz.com
“My brick-and-mortar has been closed since Saturday 3/14. 80% of my sales are generated by the physical shop so shutting it down, like most small indie businesses here in Portland, is devastating. Being a solopreneur, I’m thankful I’m not in the hard position of having to lay off employees. While the brick-and-mortar will remain closed, the online shop will continue to operate, along with the availability of digital gift cards. In addition, I’m offering complimentary home deliveries to all Portland locals.
After doing the math, it will take an average of $100 in sales/day to keep my business afloat. And while sales will continue to be the #1 way to support any business right now, the next best thing is to spread awareness of the business. On Tuesday, I’ll be 9 months pregnant. The idea was for me to start my maternity leave the week of April 13th as my due date is April 21st. I had 1 person ready to take on a few days and was just starting to onboard a second part-time employee. I’m sure we’re looking at a few months of having to shut down non-essential businesses and if my business does survive, it’ll be a bit of a stressful transition as I’ll need to quickly get new hires up to speed to be able to re-open the shop. Currently, my shop as many others in town, is seeing an outpouring of support. There’s a huge emphasis on supporting local businesses. However, as the pandemic spreads and the situation worsens, which it will before things get better, consumers will not be buying discretionary products and will be holding onto their money, which is completely understandable. This is where small businesses like mine will find themselves in a critical position.”
Cortney Morentin, the owner of La Reinita is a baker who uses only whole grains and natural leavening. She decided to close her business for two weeks in order to self quarantine. She has lost her income stream through her sales at the farmers market, catering orders and her workshops on baking with whole grains and sourdough. She hopes to be back with her signature baked goods for carry out in two weeks if at all possible. In the meantime, as for so many, it is scary to be without income. In the meantime, she just launched and almost sold out of a delivery day for Friday March 27th. She is still undecided on either going back to the farmers market or continuing with delivery. “I want to do my due diligence on keeping the community safe and healthy, but also my best to provide bread to the public that is nourishing and delicious and supports our local farmers / millers. I did share on social media that anyone who wants to have a sourdough starter free of charge can come by my house and pick one up on the front porch. They just need to message me on instagram or by email and let me know what day they will be by (anytime between 830am-sunset). Leave an empty jar in return, and take home a jar on the porch! I have a “pay it forward” program running right now and plan to make bread for about 15 people (those who are out of work or financially affected by the virus) this Monday after last week’s generous donations. Let Cortney know if you would like to order bread for her next delivery date or perhaps pay it forward so someone else can enjoy a loaf of bread that can’t afford it at the moment. Both you can do by going to our website lareinitapdx.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or instagram.com/lareinitapdx/
Wild Hearts Wellness
Wild Hearts Wellness offers holistic health services, movement classes and wellness workshops to support your well being. While their physical location is closed through March 29th, they are offering gift certificates and are also offering movement and educational classes online by donation. People can find their classes and gift certificates on their website wildheartswellness.net or by calling 971-400-6063. What better time is there to check out an online movement class?
Jen and Conor of Brimstone Boulders have had to temporarily close their amazing bouldering gym, which opened this past December, due to Covid-19. “Folks can certainly purchase gift cards or 10-punch passes on our website for future use. In addition, we’re working on getting an online storefront set up in order to allow folks to buy t-shirts, sweatshirts, strength trainers, chalk bags, hangboards or their favorite post-climbing snack through our website and have one of our employees toss it on their front porch later that week.” Brimstone Boulders have a link for their members about how their memberships can be managed. They hope if all stay well to use some of the time during the closure to add some improvements to the facility. Visit brimstoneboulders.com/member-logistics for updates.
Erica Kessler LMT
Erica Kessler is a licensed massage therapist. She made the difficult decisions to pause her practice to protect her clients. “This is a crazy, unsettling time we’re in right now. I have lived my life believing that we need the Dark to appreciate the Light, most of the time being so grateful to live in the Light. Right now, I’m waffling back and forth a lot. I’m struggling. I’ve been a massage therapist for a long time. This is the start of my 29th year. This is what I do to earn money. It’s also what I do to express my art. I’ve said for years that it’s my Calling. My spirit dies a little when I can’t touch people and offer comfort. I’m good at it. I understand the body from the inside out, with 35 years of being a dancer and knowing pain. And freedom. It’s a little hard to do what I do with a 6’ distance. I miss my clients. I miss my studio. I miss the opportunity of feeling useful. I miss the exquisite feeling of “Ahhh” when bound fascia releases and more freedom is felt, both in my client’s body and in my hands. I have no idea how anyone can best support me, except to assure that my family and friends and anyone who I view as good in the world is safe and unharmed and healthy” Here is how you can reach Erica.
Graziano and Gutierrez
Alejandro Gutierrez is a pattern-maker and sewer who works with artisanal communities in Mexico in order to incorporate their traditional techniques such as weaving on pedal looms into contemporary workwear. “We aim to provide a platform for the artisans work while bringing fair pay and consistent work. I own my apparel brand, but work a couple jobs on the side to make ends meet and since they’ve closed down I’ve decided that in the meantime I should focus solely on the brand in attempts to make some income and stay afloat the next couple months. I am releasing our first collection on Sunday, March 22nd along with a little sale on the website. I will be giving out a 15% discount with the code “PRIMERA”. Our website and social media are as follows:Website: grazianoandgutierrez.com Instagram: @graziano_and_guti errez .” Check out the beautiful apparel to support Alejandro and the communities of artisans he works with.
Absence (formerly Bottega Stories)
Alba Betancourt is a seeker of stories and a creative talented photographer. Her business, Absence (formerly Bottega Stories) uses photography to help businesses tell their unique story and feature products. In response to the Covid-19 virus, she is reaching out to small businesses that can use her help. “My business is lifestyle/product photography as you probably saw on my website, and I also consult on brand and content strategy. My biggest client has had to lay off some people and have cut the scope of my projects, so I’m currently billing much less than usual. However, I feel very fortunate that I still get to work with them through this uncertainty and I know I will make it through this. Because of that, I don’t want to make it about my hardships but rather about how I could help by being a resource should anyone need photography assets in this difficult time 🙂 Each week, I am taking a couple of small, FREE product photography projects a week for businesses that have had to close their stores and are trying to strengthen their online shops in hopes of mitigating the effects of this crisis. Any small business that feels they could benefit from having more content on their platform during this difficult time, I’m here for it! No fees, no trade, no strings attached. I’ll do my very best to keep it safe and little to no contact, too.” If anyone would like to get in touch: absencestudio.com Instagram: @absence_studio
Jen’s Bagels and Pastries
Jenna Legge is the owner of Jen’s Bagels and Pastries, a small batch wholesale bakery serving breakfast pastries, sourdough bagels, cookies and more in some of your favorite coffee shops around Portland. She also does baked goods catering. With so many closings, Jen has lost her ability to bake for her clients and is closing for at least two weeks. You can purchase gift cards for baked goods here: squareup.com/gift/ANV127ERJNWP0/order Alternately Jenna has a go fund me at gofundme.com/f/JenBees You can learn more about Jenna at jenspdx.com
Construct the Present: Diversity,Equity and Inclusion Education and Services
Alexis Braly James of Construct the Present provides diversity, equity and inclusion education services.
“My business has definitely been hit by this pandemic. Businesses have put a hold on trainings, strategic planning, and change management. Unfortunately this impacts my cash flow and deliverables. I am currently offering 1-on-1 coaching, virtual training, and soon-to-be webinars for self-directed learning.” I am able to move my Facilitation and education modules online via Zoom and I am considering creating public trainings via webinar.
People can support me by sharing my services with their community via email or social media @ctppdx (twitter and Instagram) I am still taking clients and can offer services via zoom or phone. constructthepresent.com
Inner Nature Acupuncture
While Tiare Sheller , L.Ac. of Inner Nature Acupuncture had to shut down her office for now, she is available for telephone consultation. Here is a message she sent to her clients: “During the Coronavirus epidemic in China, almost every patient was given anti-viral and damp clearing Chinese herbs in the hospital to clear phlegm from the lungs with amazing success. My colleagues and I have been continuously studying and discussing the herbal formulas being used in China to treat different phases of this epidemic. I am well informed and medically licensed to prescribe herbs and will be available by phone for herbal consults, and happy to mail you an individualized herbal formula suited just for your body. My telephone herbal consult rates will be $75 plus the cost of herbs for the initial consultation and $45 plus the cost of herbs for follow-ups. If you are interested, please text (503.505.0335) or email me (email@example.com) and we will set up a time.” InnerNatureAcupuncture.com
Lindsay Nelson runs a small residential cleaning business, herself with 3 part time employees. “Some of our clients are supporting us by prepaying for when they will be ready to restart services. For future new clients, we are selling gift cards. We don’t make a dime if we don’t leave the house to go to others, so this is really hitting our employees and me hard. It will mean applying for unemployment and food stamps for them, and me borrowing from Peter to pay Paul for a while. Until last week, we have been financially solvent and steady, always with a waitlist of clients solely by word of mouth, no advertising.” For future service contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Gazelle Consulting: Flexible and Affordable HIPAA Compliance Services for Business Associates and Healthcare Providers.
Christina Glabas of Gazelle Consulting reports “We are very fortunate to be able to say Gazelle is currently open for business. However, we’ve lost a few of our contracts. Our staff has had to take pay cuts internally. Currently our biggest client is still engaged, so we are going to keep moving forward!
We have moved to completely remote operations. We have been performing all internal and client meetings using Zoom or Google Hangouts, and sales calls generally occur by phone.
If you need project management support, guidance from technology experts, or have questions about privacy and security at this time, give us a call. https://gazelleconsulting.org/
This is a crazy and fascinating time for business. I think we were getting wrapped up in an economy fueled by hype in a lot of ways. We are now in a position to really evaluate what actually has real value in our society and what kind of work is meaningful. While we grapple with existential questions in our personal lives and our businesses, I hope that we’ll see that this results in turning this ship in a better direction than it was going in.”
Nathan Sandberg of OnGrade Studio
Nathan Sandberg is a glass artist and educator. “Most of my business relies on people congregating in groups to take educational glass art classes. This means either I travel to them, or they travel to me. Every planned workshop, near and far, has been cancelled through May. This is close to 35% of my planned yearly revenue gone.
Another aspect of my business relies on people visiting art galleries and museum gift shops to purchase unnecessary luxury items which are obviously useless to most people, most days, but definitely in a pandemic. All of these outlets are closed (understandably).
My only hope is to close the studio for 10 (more) days so it and I stay clean and healthy and in the meantime see if I can find a few brave local students who won’t have to fly, or stay at a hotel, to learn from me and service them one at a time. It’s challenging because I don’t normally teach people who are truly new to art glass. I can’t necessarily attract people who are just idle at home due to the expense and steep learning curve. People usually pay me as an investment in their long term education. That said, I need to figure out a way to perhaps entertain and ultimately educate a few local people in the coming month(s). It’s gonna be a challenge but the silver lining is that I’d be able to introduce/expose a few curious people to the awesome world of art glass.
I have updated and stocked my online store with as many amazing glass objects as possible. I also have been slowly developing two products (think tools) that I will make available sooner than originally planned. nathansandberg.com/giftshop
I am also working to expedite the editing and post production of my latest educational video lesson so students and other curious people can begin streaming it while stuck at home: aaeglass.com/classes/video-classes/nathan-sandberg.html “
Quarter Moon Imports
Katelin Haggerty’s sense of humor is prevailing when she says “If you’re not buying a business ten months before a pandemic, you have no sense of adventure”. She purchased Quarter Moon, an established brick and mortar clothing and gift boutique in Tallahassee Florida in June of 2019. Having been employed as a buyer and manager at the shop for 5 years before the purchase, she was ready for the challenge of ownership, but never could have imagined finding herself in this situation with a loan to pay and a sudden halt to business. She had to close the brick and mortar shop for the safety of her staff and customers, but has adjusted her website for sales and is adding new merchandise to her website daily. Buying online is one way to support Katelin through this time. “If people want to have a good laugh, visit our sock and kitchen sections on the website.” We can all get through this as a community. Lean on your people.” You can find her goods at quartermoonimports.com Facebook and Instagram @quartermoonimports.
109 is a non-profit organization that brings volunteers together with local grassroots organizations around the world who are positively impacting their communities and environments. Based on the belief that travel designed with intention helps to foster compassion, awareness and understanding,109 has been successful in their mission of supporting over 400 of their alumni/volunteers in adopting more sustainable and mindful ways of living, while having a real impact on communities in eleven countries. Community driven projects have included providing clean drinking water, improving food security, disaster relief, women and girls rights to education and more. 109 exists to help other non-profits and grassroots organizations but at this time, they are seeking your help to survive. Co founder and executive director Leticia Gonzalez Reyes has organized this fundraiser and your donations will be matched up to $10,000 by a friend and advisor to 109. All donations are tax deductible. Please read more about their mission and work on their Go Fund Me page.
Stories Deborah Steinkopf Strategies (non-profit consultant)
I’ve got TONS of stories…I’ve been doing emergency communication rollouts and emergency funding requests for my clients all week. Some examples:
Immigration Counseling Services has had to move their legal services online, but are still required to meet with detained children per their funding contracts. This means some of their staff can work remotely while others don’t have that option. It’s a weird kind of workplace equity issue…
Community Warehouse. Between their warehouses and estate stores, they have over 2000 contacts a month. The math was too overwhelming. They had to shut down and layoff all of their direct line staff — about 22 impacted people.
For other clients, like Bradley Angle and Portland Street Medicine, there’s no option to work remotely or to socially distance from vulnerable clients. Portland Street Medicine is being asked to be the lead on outreach to the homeless by the city and the county, but haven’t been given any funding to do so. To ramp up their outreach efforts, they will need to ask volunteer doctors and nurses, who are already being asked to do a lot in their healthcare jobs. It’s hard to see how this is going to work, but they’re aiming to do it. They’re being constantly hit up by the press for interviews and we’ve had to create a press kit because they simply don’t have capacity to talk to the press right now.
The Dougy Center = they’re figuring out how to ramp up when the community will be needing them for grief counseling services. Can you even imagine having to do that kind of strategic planning?
Steinkopf Strategies is steinkopfstrategies.com/