Aloha, I’m Addison Bulosan, owner and operator of The Specific Chiropractic Centers — Kaua‘i and Maui, and Tasting Kaua‘i.
This letter is directed to our Kaua‘i community as a plea to help local businesses. A lot of our local small businesses are suffering and having a hard time staying open. Can you hear us out and help?
Being born and raised in Molokoa, Lihu‘e, it was a dream come true to move back home in 2014 to start my own practice; just a 15 minute walk from my childhood home. My Grandma Castora Suero and Grandpa Catalino Suero moved from O‘ahu in 1955 because my Grandpa got a plantation job. My parents, Charlmaine and Adams Bulosan raised us on Kaua‘i and this community helped me have the greatest childhood anyone could have asked for.
Fast forward to today, I’ve been working closely with our local businesses throughout the island since the beginning of the pandemic through the Rice Street Business Association (RSBA) as President, Lihu‘e Business Association (LBA) as Vice President, and the Kauai Chamber of Commerce as a board member; however, in these last few weeks I have taken to grassroots efforts because the devastation that is occurring is too great.
Our unemployment rate is at an all time high and our small businesses have been shouldering the kuleana for the local economy for nearly a year. We’ve been adapting to every added protocol, rule, and have been innovative in so many ways. Many businesses have inevitably gone under. Many are about to go under.
Who are we? Many of us are local people just like you, born and raised on this beautiful island.
Some of us moved here to create a life just like many of you. We all share the same things. We love this island. We love each other. We care about the health and safety of everyone. We all made sacrifices during this pandemic.
A lot of small businesses have been silenced out of fear of being chastised for trying to save their businesses, despite following (and oftentimes going above and beyond) the Covid-19 health and safety protocols, but now is the time to RALLY TOGETHER.
Here is my plea that I hope businesses owners and community members alike can get behind and support the businesses that were there for everyone when help was needed:
• Stop stigmatizing and ostracizing local businesses who are trying to save their livelihood. We can help local businesses and be safe at the same time. It’s not safety versus economy.
• Stop attacking each other and start helping each other.
• Adopt a local small business. Look back at all the local businesses you asked to support your kids’ fundraisers, your nonprofit’s causes, your personal endeavors. Make a list with your family and friends, and each day, fully support them.
• Write a positive review.
• Share them on social media.
• Send them a letter of love.
• Buy their service or product.
• Buy local only. Make a commitment with your family and friends to buy local whenever possible and for the entire year.
• Volunteer with a local business. Whether it’s helping them clean their office, do their social media, etc…everything helps.
Many of us want to stay in business and keep calling Kaua‘i home. Most of us started our businesses because we believe it gives back to our community and helps us be a part of this community. We hope that we’ve provided enough value to you to keep us for years to come.
Dr. Addison Bulosan is a resident and small business owner in Lihu’e
Source: The Garden Island