With Mother’s Day coming up on the 19th March, a new campaign features mums talking about the importance of shop local and how they would spend a local gift card for their town or city
14 busy mums have taken part in a ‘mums love local’ campaign encouraging people to think local when they spoil their mum this Mother’s Day, supporting local businesses at the same time.
The businesses owned or operated by the mums are all part of their local economy boosting Town & City Gift Card program, local gift cards that can be spent in shops, restaurants, salons, cafés and more, with both high street brands and independents.
Experiences over ‘stuff’ was a big theme for the mums, with some saying they’d use a local gift card to go for a meal, to book a massage, to visit a café or to go to the cinema. Flowers, chocolates and flowers were some of the products favoured by mums.
Featured mums include a mum running a Kent café helping people with autism to find paid, meaningful employment, a Scottish mum who’s given out over 3500 free meals to those in need, and a single mum who transformed a derelict hotel into a thriving business.
The campaign also features a Yorkshire mum of one and beer shop owner who’s showing her daughter she can work in any industry she chooses to, an Australian mum and daughter team who took their dream of owning a chocolate shop and made it a reality, and a third generation Northern Irish gift shop where you might be served by gran, mum or daughter.
Spanning retail, hospitality, health and beauty, and services, the mums were positive about the benefits of shopping local, including keeping businesses open, employing local people, and keeping towns and cities vibrant and thriving:
Lee Midlane set up Elgin based IT Central in 2015 and said: “The reality is that we use local or we lose local. Small businesses are here and we’re hanging in here for the long term but we don’t have the same resources and economies of scale that bigger businesses do, so we’re really reliant on local support. It’s really important to shop local, spend local and keep it local, this Mother’s Day and all year round.”
Danuta Dobrzanska, Sales Manager at Revolucion de Cuba in Aberdeen said: “Local businesses are vital for keeping our towns and cities vibrant. If we don’t go to our high street to get the things we want and need, our shops will disappear, and then when we do want to go out, the businesses won’t be here. We have to think about how we spend our money in these tough times.”
Katie Kennedy from Fermanagh Cottage Industries, which has operated in Enniskillen for 60 years, said: “This Mother’s Day, I would ask everyone to shop local because it keeps shops like ours open. We appreciate each and every person that walks through our door. When you shop local, you’re supporting other local families, so we can keep the high street alive.”
Kiera Rodda from Lily’s Social Kitchen in Kent said: “When people support local, it means more money into the local economy. Spend with a local business like Lily’s this Mother’s Day and we can then spend with other local businesses, even down to using local drink suppliers, and reducing delivery mileage.”
Jennifer Potts from Mrs Potts in Bristol said: “If you come and get a cake from us, it pays wages and gets spent locally. It means we can employ local people and buy from local suppliers. It also helps interesting, creative ideas to stay in Bristol and thrive, which makes our city different from any other city. Your whole community benefits when you shop local.”
The mums were also honest about the challenges of running a business as a mum.
Sylvia Riley opened Glow Skin & Beauty in 2000, relocating the business to Porthlethen in 2021, and said: “Running a business as a mum involves wearing a lot of different hats. You need to be professional, on the ball, attentive, and when the working day is over you have to walk through the front door and be mum again, giving your children the attention they deserve. It is challenging, but hopefully my children will learn that they can achieve anything they want to achieve.”
Laura Heywood runs The Scented Garden in Chester and said: “I’ve got three children, two are teenagers and one is eleven. When they were babies, it was a never ending juggling act of making sure I was there for my children and there for my business. The guilt you feel as both a mum and a business owner can be overwhelming.
“Now they’re a little older, they can come into the salon and help out. They’ve learnt some fantastic life skills, such as communication, and work ethic. Just because I leave work and close the salon door doesn’t mean that the work ends. Once the children are in bed, there’s also marketing and paperwork but I love what I do; it’s my passion.”
Sue Latcham is the manager of F.Hinds in Middlesbrough and said: “Being a working mum can have its challenges. The main one is time but it’s good for my children to see that hard work pays off, and it also means that we value and appreciate our family time.”
The ‘mums love local’ campaign is being led by local gift card giants Town & City Gift Cards, founded by fintech Miconex.
Colin Munro is the managing director of Miconex: “Small businesses are the heart of our communities, often run by local mums. Our ‘mums love local’ campaign is a reminder that when we spoil our mum by shopping local this Mother’s Day, we’re also supporting these hard working mums running local businesses and providing much needed services and experiences for locals.”