Charlottesville black-owned businesses thrive in wake of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement

Pearl Island
Updated: Jun. 10, 2020 at 10:55 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Black-owned businesses in Charlottesville are getting an overwhelming amount of support from the community.

Ever since the Charlottesville 29 put out a list of black-owned businesses, those businesses have been thriving.

Just a few short weeks ago, many small restaurants and shops were struggling to keep their doors open due to the coronavirus crisis, but now the tables have turned.

"Sales seem to have more than doubled,” Sober Pierre, Owner of Pearl Island said.

“We've seen an upswing in our sales,” Anwar Allen, Owner of Allen Scottish Shortbread.

The increasing sales are mostly in wake of recent events surrounding black lives matter and racial injustice, but it's working out in their favor.

“Our other business comes from places like Happy Cook, The Virginia Shop and so with them we’ve been seeing 5 or 10 orders a day which is amazing for us, we have never seen that ever," Allen said.

Over at Pearl Island, they had to close up shop for the day to regroup.

“Last week, Tuesday was an abnormal day and then Wednesday was even more abnormal just with the amount of folks that came through and so we pretty much ran out of food,” Pierre said.

In order to keep up with high demand, Allen says he's seen small miracles.

“People show up out of nowhere they say hey how can we volunteer our time, hey can we work for a couple of hours here and there,” Allen said.

Overall, businesses agree that having more than enough business than hardly any at all is a much better problem to have.

“It's definitely a difficult time just with the restrictions we've had and just trying to get back to some level of normalcy, but over it's been a great opportunity to get more brand awareness,” Pierre said.

Business owners hope when things get back to normal and people return to their lives that they will still come out and support their businesses.

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