I remind people that what we are experiencing today is not our final destination.

We are going through this moment in time, and it will come to an end. We will continue to adapt and change to make things work, and that is the powerful story of the human spirit.

The McAllen Chamber is doing everything we can to help small businesses survive this moment. Here are some of the things the McAllen Chamber of Commerce is doing:

  • The Chamber continues to advocate for “round four” of the federal stimulus packages for COVID-19 and to increase additional expansion and money available to small businesses. 
  • We launched a partnership with the Monitor to promote Chamber member restaurants and curbside and take out services.
  • We are hosting, every Thursday, “MCA Talks” with information from a wide variety of people and topics, such as Mayor Jim Darling, the Small Business Administration, Texas Workforce Commission, Congressman Gonzalez, how to market during COVID-19, and more to come.
  • The Chamber has created a COVID-19 resource page with all the latest information on SBA loans, programs, and other resources to assist small businesses. 
  • We have launched weekly curbside cash mobs for member restaurants for drive-through and/or curbside. You can help by supporting our local restaurants every Thursday with our curbside cats mobs.
  • We have launched a survey of the economic impact of COVID-19 and its impact on McAllen businesses (see results on the Chamber’s COVID-19 page).
  • Watch for the Chamber e-blast. Many times, we are updating new information and hew programs several times a week. Make sure you are receiving our e-blasts because it is the quickest way for us to get information out to you. 
  • The Chamber has created downloadable guides and checklists for dealing with COVID-19 and what documents are required to get SBA funding.
  • The Chamber continues to support and market small businesses through social media with positive messages.
  • We are creating a McAllen COVID-19 Business Ignite and Recovery Taskforce designed to assist businesses during this pandemic. The team will include the City of McAllen, McAllen Economic Development Corporation, McAllen ISD, and the McAllen Chamber (more information coming).
  • We have moved all our networking events and seminars onto the Zoom platform.
  • We continue to work with our hospitality partners and keep them informed of their status and challenges. I am pleased to announce we have secured for 2023 the Association of Bilingual Educators Conference in McAllen – A Big Win!
  • Our next objective is to assist retail businesses in McAllen. If you are doing business online, we want to promote you, please let us know. Contact Blanca Cardenas at 682-2871.

These are just some of the things the McAllen Chamber of Commerce is doing. Deep within us is the resiliency to make it through this moment. We will learn and get better through this crisis. We will find new ways of doing things, and we will be successful. 

Finally, we are hardwired to be part of a tribe, a group, a community, or a region. We will gather again. Stay safe and stay connected to the Chamber. 

Better, Stronger, Together. 

The above guest column is based upon a letter McAllen Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Steve Ahlenius sent to Chamber members and supporters.