For What It's Worth

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Pay it forward gift card giveaway…



What a weird, weird, scary world we’re all living in right now. I had lived in FL for a few decades and had been through natural disasters but this is the first time, in my lifetime, that it’s ALL of us in this together. It doesn't matter where you live – you are in this.

Small businesses are in trouble right now. Knowing that they might not make it through or how near the edge they’ll have to live while they try to get back to normal after this is all over. Their dreams shattered and it breaks my heart.

Gift cards are a way to keep the money flowing while they have to remain closed or operating at a reduced capacity.

So my thought is to do a giveaway for gift cards to your local or small business of choice. Listen, I shop at Amazon and eat at Panera and all that too but this is for your local donut shop or bakery, pizzeria or favorite Etsy shop that’s still able to ship or do curbside pick-up or can use the cash flow now and you can visit them once they are up and running again.

The prize – one $25 gift card to any small business or donation to a charity that needs help during this time. Please make sure it’s something that has an online option for me to order!

I will try to pick one winner a week (every Friday starting next Friday – March 27th) for as long as I can. If circumstances change then I’ll end the giveaway sooner but give one weeks notice. Just keep on entering and I’ll pick a random winner using Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
*Unfortunately, I know a few businesses might not make it and render the gift card void so I need to mention that I am not responsible for that and will not be replacing with another card.

*US only. I will be having a separate Book Depository giveaway for you all though! I love my international followers and I know it’s hard out there you too!

If you want to join in with a giveaway please do!! I’ll add a linky at the bottom of this post. But this is meant to help SMALL businesses. So indie book stores, small restaurants (not the big chains), Etsy shops, charities are all good. Amazon…no.

A few quick ideas:

Etsy: Thousands of independent sellers with unique products need the income to stay afloat! I frequent Five Lemons Company’s Etsy Shop a lot. Kristen makes handmade earrings and other jewelry for her Etsy shop and local farmers market. She has lots of fun categories like the 80’s, Disney, Harry Potter, & will even do custom pieces (which she has done for me). Everything in the shop is 25% off right now with 40% off St. Patrick’s jewelry and free shipping over 40%

Independent Bookstores: So many independent bookstores were already struggling and need your help. They are getting savvy – doing curbside pickup, $1 shipping and other incentives. Powell’s Books is the worlds largest independent book store and just had to close and lay off most of its workers. They are still taking online orders and shipping is free for orders over $25. Pre-order upcoming titles to help both authors and bookstores. (also use your library!)

Flowers: I was SO looking forward to spring and all the flower festivals in my area and starting a garden at my new house. But you can still order everything online! Spring Hill Nursery is sending out spring plantings now. I went to the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm tulip festival last year but it had to be canceled – you can still order bulbs on line though here.

Charities: Like World Central Kitchen, for example. This wonderful organization, led by Chef Jose Andres has been been responding to disasters all over the world and providing fresh meals and has stepped up to help face this challenge as well.  They are mapping feeding efforts, delivering meals and starting a community kitchen initiative. Donate here.

A local food bank would be another great choice. They can leverage gift cards better than food donations.

Restaurants: If you aren’t in a full lockdown, several states still have curbside pick-up food options for local restaurants. We’ve been trying to go to as many as possible to help support them as long as we can but most are shuttering. I’ve also seen several places set up GoFundMe accounts to help keep their employees paid. Buying a gift card now can help keep employees and bills paid until this passes. And you get a treat when this all passes.

Animal shelters: Consider fostering an animal if you can. Shelters will be overflowing with surrendered animals because of the financial crisis and have low adoption rates on top of that. They will also likely start to have have less food and monetary donations and supplies while costs go up so donations will be much needed. Farm sanctuaries will also be hit hard but a drop in donations and have very high expenses.

Feel free to post a link in the comments if you are small business with special shipping rates or need the boost, or list your favorite business that you would like to help or any other ideas you have to help out small businesses get through these tough times.

 
Want to join in? Enter your giveaway link below!

*Your giveaway can be for whatever business you would like. Amazon or another box store might be the only option for people to get supplies and that's fine too. Whatever your contribution to help is is great!


29 comments:

  1. I LOVE this idea! I will do my best to help spread the word!!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    ReplyDelete
  2. Everything is so messed up right now! I'm not one to usually worry about stuff overmuch but I've been this past week reading about people that get COVID and how it affects them. It's terrifying. The news about my cousin getting it didn't help lol. Anyway... this is a fab idea. Awesome that you're doing this. If there's any silver lining to all this it's seeing how people step up for each other, just because they want to. It's nice to see given our current climate.

    And of course all my condolences on Fonzi. Take care of yourself!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope your cousin is continuing to do better. It's so awful hearing these stories and then the disconnect from people who think it's no big deal.

      Delete
  3. Big heart 😘. I know pretty much everyone in the blogosphere knows you and your blog, but I'm still going to include this post in my next TYT.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I doubt that lol so thank you for sharing xoxoxo

      Delete
  4. Thank you so much for sharing this. I worry so much about all the local businesses in real trouble right now. Bryan and I typically order via food delivery services or local restaurants in our town at least once a week, but with a baby on the way and not knowing how exactly this will all shake up with our job situations, we’ve cut back since the pandemic started.

    Also my heart breaks so much for your loss �� I know how much Fonzi meant to you and that’s just such a heartbreaking loss. Sending all my ❤️❤️❤️ Your way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Charlotte.

      We've always tried to go to local restaurants at least once a week. Kevin was helping the local donut place that just opened by switching his companies monthly meeting breakfasts to there instead of grabbing McD's and now those are all canceled. I'm SO worried about them all.

      Delete
  5. Sending more hugs to you. It's such a crazy world and this is a great idea. I nominate the NH SPCA in memory of Fonzi. We went to our local coffee house for take out this morning. It's so important to help those small businesses. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm trying to hang in there with the smaller businesses as long as possible. It's going to be hard on everyone but especially them.

      And thank you so much - that is really thoughtful Jen {hugs}

      Delete
  6. What a great idea. I know things are bad right now and I know you're still in a lot of pain. ((Gentle hugs to you))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Mary. I appreciate the kind words and hugs.

      Delete
  7. Aww this is the best Karen! I'm making a list of restaurants I want to visit once all of this is behind us.

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm trying to frequent the ones that are still open for take out. They were barely hanging in there to begin with so it's going to be a tough road ahead.

      Delete
  8. Karen this is such a lovely giveaway idea! I definitely would like to join too, in some way, I have to think about what I want to do! Also, I just wanted to tell you again how sorry I am. You have been in my thoughts a lot, I really hope you are doing as well as you can be right now. ♥♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Shannon {hugs} It's been a tough time but I need to do something positive or else I'll feel overwhelmed.

      Let me know if you come up with something and I'll share.

      Delete
  9. Karen, you are just too fabulous, and this is such a kind thing to do. Sending you lots and lots of hugs, RO

    ReplyDelete
  10. This is such a great giveaway and such a good way to pay it forwards to the struggling self run and small businesses at the moment. I love how you're showing your support <3

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is such a beautiful idea. If I won, I would like that money to be donated to our only no-kill shelter in our area.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That would be awesome. They can use the help right now!

      Delete
  12. Go you Karen! This is lovely. It really is a horrible time for small business owners and self-employed people especially... Although, the UK seems to be doing more to help it's businesses (and citizens) and prevent layoffs. :/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We help big business first here. We're now debating our stimulus package is too generous with unemployment benefits and people might not want to go back to work *Face palm*

      Delete
  13. 3/30/20 FIRST WINNER is Shannon!A $25 donation has been made to Koh Tao International Primary - https://www.kohtaoforkids.com/donate-today/

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love this so much!! A very lovely thought.

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

    ReplyDelete
  15. Winner #2 Lori - Gift Card to Powell's Books

    Winner #3 - Jen - donation to NH SPCA

    Winner #4 Olivia - book from TBD

    ReplyDelete