Dayton couple starts “Stimulus Challenge” to support local businesses

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – As coronavirus shutdowns continue, small businesses continue to face new challenges.

“We opened officially three days before everything was shut down,” Tender Mercy managing partner Chris Dimmick said.

Chris Dimmick said the business at Tender Mercy has pivoted how they serve customers in order to make ends meet.

Wanting to do something to boost small small businesses and the economy, Dayton couple Marshall Weil and Gisselle Pereira stepped in to help.

“Neither one of us had our incomes affected, we’re both still working, so we really thought it could be a good opportunity to use the dollars that we would be receiving in a way that really actually does stimulate the economy,” Gisselle Pereira said.

Instead of just pledging their own money, they wanted to challenge others to do the same.

So they launched stimuluschallenge.us.

The initiative encourages anyone who can to give half their stimulus check to a nonprofit then spend the other half at local businesses.

“Maybe how you support a local business is hiring a local contractor to fix your fence, or just by eating out where you were going to eat out anyway, so it’s not that you’re totally diverting the money,” Marshall Weil said.

So far, more than $80,000 has been pledged nationwide.

“This is a great effort that mobilizes and organizes people to get behind a pledge to do something with that stimulus check that it’s intended to do,” Dimmick said.

The website doesn’t collect any money or financial information, it is simply a site to pledge support for the local economy.

People are also encouraged to share their pledges on social media using #stimuluschallenge.

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