Whether you’re just thinking about starting your Christmas shopping or have preparations well under way, this Small Business Saturday is a great time to think about heading down to your local high street. Through our Love Croydon, shop local campaign, we have backed our local businesses through the toughest of times, and this support continues to be so important for them and all of us. Our bustling high streets, colourful street markets and corner shops are part of Croydon’s unique character and by choosing to shop local, we can all play a role in making them a success. Boosting our local economy helps everyone, creating more jobs and opportunities, and helping our high streets to thrive. So this December, instead of ordering our shopping online, lets show our local businesses how much they mean to us and celebrate them instead. Love Croydon and shop local – it’s time to rediscover your neighbourhood gems.
With the tightening of restrictions, it is now mandatory to wear a face covering in shops and on public transport, so remember to take yours with you when travelling around the borough. We are still learning about the Omicron variant but what we do know is that the public health advice remains the same – the best way to protect yourself against the Covid-19 virus is to get vaccinated. Do take up your vaccine and booster jabs as soon as you can – book online or find your nearest walk-in clinic. Croydon’s director of public health, Rachel Flowers reminded us of the importance of hands, face, space, fresh air in her statement earlier this week. Regular testing before we meet people helps to avoid us spreading the virus without knowing, and if you feel at all unwell, get a PCR test and stay at home until you have the results. We know from past experience during this pandemic that if we all do these things, we can make a difference and help to keep ourselves and others safe.
World AIDS Day
On 1 December Croydon supported World AIDS Day – a time for us to commemorate those who lost their lives in a pandemic even more devastating than the one we face today, and one which continues to impact millions worldwide. In the UK alone, over 105,200 people are living with HIV – World AIDS Day is an opportunity to demonstrate our support for them and for all of us to challenge the stigma that many sadly still experience. It’s also crucial that we raise awareness about the help that is available. Metro, the council’s HIV healthy living service, provides health and wellbeing support for anyone living with or affected by HIV in Croydon. Contact them on 020 8305 5006, email firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.metrocharity.org.uk
Have a good weekend, shop local and stay safe,
Councillor Hamida Ali, leader of the council