Regrettably within the last few weeks our local Latino community has suffered two business casualties. The first was the closing of Ciano’s Modern Latin Flavors in downtown Campbell in mid September and the most recent, only a few days ago, was the closing of the Blackbird Tavern in downtown San Jose. Both of these closings caught most of us by surprise mostly because most of us thought both restaurants were busy and doing well. I can only imagine how difficult the decision for these Latino small business owners to close must have been for them, especially because I observed how much time, energy and passion they put into their ventures. I also believe that for many of us experienced moments of sadness, disappointment and loss because we had developed a connection to each of these restaurants. I know that I certainly have experienced those feelings especially because this wasn’t happening to some random small business owners, this was happening to my friends. I also think this hits close to home for me because I know what it’s like to put all of your blood, sweat and tears into a venture. So what do we, as a community, do now? First, we become aware that this can happen to those in our community who venture out to start small businesses. Secondly, we do what we can to support our Latino small business owners by shopping and supporting at their stores, restaurants, businesses and ventures. Lastly, we promote their ventures by encouraging those within our networks to do the same. When we hosted SVL’s soft launch in December 2011, some of you may remember that event, we talked about creating a Shop Latino Business Directory where we would feature Latino owned businesses with the primary purpose of support. Well, at this point, we are delighted to announce that the SVL Shop Latino Business Directory is finally here! The inaugural version of this directory will be debuted in our next print issue which will be released very soon. The directory will also be available online at SVLatino.com as well as through your mobile devices. In an effort to stimulate our own economy we ask that you support Latino owned businesses, especially those in our directory. If we effectively support our own ventures we will never need to rely on any stimulus package, we are our own stimulus package! So get ready to Shop Local Shop Latino!
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