• Airdrie Chamber receives much-needed money for small business

    Nearly $85,000 has been given to help local businesses still struggling from the effects of the pandemic.

    The Airdrie Chamber of Commerce recently announced it was approved for funding from the federal government's shop local initiative.

    "It's unfortunate that it had to happen because of COVID," said Executive Director Marilyne Aalhus. "Now, it's an opportunity for us to do more to support local businesses in our community."

    The money will help with the Chamber's plan to build an online platform for local businesses. The website, ChamberMarket.ca, is still in the works but Aalhus hopes they will be able to go live later this year.

    "We've championed a program that will allow people to, hopefully, do a lot more online shopping on a local level. We know that during the pandemic, people were obviously taking to the online world of shopping and will continue to."

    This week the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce gathered, virtually, for its Annual General Meeting and promised to focus efforts on promoting the Shop Local movement more than they already are.  

    The timeline to launch the site is set for early September with a soft launch with local beta vendors, and a full launch to consumers in October.

    The funding was part of a partnership between the federal government and the Alberta Chambers of Commerce.

    "Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, community chambers have truly been a lifeline for businesses," said CEO Ken Kobly. "As we transition to reopening and recovery, we still have a long road ahead to rebuild our economy."

    The second round of applications for further funding is currently being processed.