During this time of isolation and fear, it’s difficult to know what to do to keep oneself safe from COVID-19, must less support and help others.

Any show of kindness, from shopping for someone at high risk to simply calling to check on a friend, is not only welcome, but makes a contribution to society, even if it seems like a small one.

While it’s important to give support on an individual basis, it’s also important to support local businesses.

One way to do that is to participate in

Locallifesaver.com.

The website, established by Kyle Robinson, owner of Print my Threads in Flatwoods, sells T-shirts with the website’s name for $20; half goes to his business to make the T-shirts and half goes to support local businesses that sign up. Those purchasing the T-shirts can specify what business they’d like their donation to go to; the name of the town where the business is based will appear on the shirt.

Robinson said the response has been great. As of Tuesday, more than $3,000 has been raised for 43 businesses through the sale of 321 T-shirts.

“We saw the need to help local businesses who are currently struggling to stay afloat,” he said. “There's a movement by screenprinting shops happening all over the country. There's currently a movement of campaigns and projects like this popping up all over the country. These grassroots projects are raising a ton of money and helping local businesses who otherwise have no (or very little) income.”

Robinson’s idea is giving aid to local businesses in an organized way, calling on all to show their support. It shows how working together can yield big results.

It’s also symbolic of what individuals can do to boost their hometown.

Even during a time of isolation, individuals can shop local for all their supplies.

We are all at different levels in our ability to actually leave our homes and go to stores, but with many delivery services and the practice of social distancing and wearing masks and gloves, we are all able to keep most, if not all, of our money spent in our region — a financial method of helping our neighbor.

It’s always important to support local business. It’s even more important to do so now.

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