No one could have predicted the devastating year that is 2020. Every single person has been touched by Covid-19 in some form or fashion. Lives and livelihoods have been lost and we will feel the loss for years to come. With a heavy heart but also with an attitude of extreme optimism, I imagine we will reflect on this year with a mix of anger and sadness, yet deeply appreciate the extreme acts of kindness of caring people. Here is your opportunity to create one of those moments of compassion and love…
Remy is a long-time friend of mine who is suffering greatly, both in life and livelihood. He hasbeen fighting the virus in his body while he and his wife, Sara, battle the financial repercussions of economic shutdown.
Located in Charlotte, NC, Remy was given relatively little notice back in March that he would have to close his hair salon. Like many other service-based, “non-essential” businesses, hairstylists cannot make money if they cannot work. Being a sole owner and having no employees, he did not qualify for a Paycheck Protection Program loan or any other small business relief. In May, he was permitted to reopen with specific restrictions that, in combination with fear of the virus, also restricted his ability to earn his regular income. He was operating at roughly 40% of his usual business when he became infected with COVID. Sara, Remy’s wife of 12 years, had taken a position with a new company in February and the two of them still had her income to rely on. In August, after her company had just received a Paycheck Protection Program loan, Sara was laid off. A hard worker and not one to give up, she chose to start her own business, but new businesses take time to get off the ground. Though they were able to receive mortgage relief due to her layoff, household bills still need to be paid, Remy’s salon rent still needs to be paid and, at the beginning of April 2021, the forbearance of their mortgage ends andwill be due in full. Their savings had already taken a hit in 2019 when they were forced to leave their home for nearly 5 months due to a burst pipe. Even though Sara works part-time at a clothing boutique, they were barely keeping their heads above water when Remy became sick. Sara is now required to quarantine with him so there is NO money coming in. They are drowning. After Remy was diagnosed, Sara made an appeal to the governor but who knows if it will cross his desk.
They are out of money. It is all gone now. Remy was a good friend to me in a confusing and directionless time of my life. He made me laugh and gave me space to be and feel however I needed to, but mostly, he was just there when I needed a friend. He and Sara have welcomed me into their home, fed me and given me a place to rest my head when I needed it. It hurts my heart to know they are struggling so terribly. They need help. We rely on your compassion and kindness to help.
- nicole johnson
- Julie Haack
- Jodi Cecere
Organizer and beneficiary
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