Wairoa's small businesses and retailers provide a raft of vital services and products and it is paramount we look after them in the wake of Covid-19.

As a small and isolated community, it is vital we look after Wairoa's small businesses as losing even one of them would have a massive impact on our community.

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If we don't support our local businesses, they may not survive, and we could lose the convenience of having their products or services available locally.

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Council is working with a range of partners to ensure as many businesses as possible can open their doors post-pandemic.

We are fortunate our local MP, the Honourable Stuart Nash, is also the Minister of Small Business.

I have been talking with Stuart and he assures me the Government is well aware of the challenges facing small businesses like those in Wairoa and across the country.

Council has also partnered with Tātau Tātau o Te Wairoa Trust, the Post-Settlement Governance Entity, and Ngati Pahauwera to deliver the business wellness initiative, Pākihi Ora, to support Wairoa businesses in the wake of Covid-19.

Predictions are that we will have a new normal moving forward and we have to ensure our business are positioned for these changes and challenges.

Once it is business as usual it is then important people shop locally. Before you consider buying something from out of town, stop and think, can I get this in town?

We need to support our local retailers and shop locally to enable them to be there for us when we need them.