Awani Review

Complete News World

To Save Our Small Shops: The Village Keeps Its Only Business

The only store in a small village in Centre-du-Québec that was saved from closing is now making a windfall.

In the fall of 2021, the only store owner in Notre Dame de Lourdes was about to close.

However, the mayor of the place, Jocelyn Bédard, could not resign himself to seeing her disappear.

His village of about 800 inhabitants, in full demographic growth, had already been deprived of a restaurant for fifteen years, and for him the departure of the shop was not a reality.

Therefore, the municipality bought the store building at the expense of the municipal assessment, i.e. $104,000, and entrusted its management to the Local Development Committee. Volunteer known for his dynamism, Yannick Lemire, accepted the presidency.

“The store is the first thing the municipality needs,” said Mr. Lemire.

At the entrance to Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes, the business, which has undergone a renovation, now looks great on Route 265, near Highway 20, with new signage representing the municipality’s coat of arms.

“We wanted it to be nice and clean. It’s the door to the village,” exclaimed the mayor.

mutual assistance

Last summer, customers applauded the reopening of the store and are happy to support their small shop.

“Citizens appreciate it. They are tired of going somewhere else. I don’t know how many times we have been told thank you,” said the elected official.

After six weeks of operation, the little shop had $100,000 in sales, gentlemen. Bédard and Lemire, which corresponds to a quarter of the forecast for the full year.

“Without a store, there was a shortage. Businesses in the area were complaining,” said Mr. Lemire.

See also  Four days of strike for workers on three ferries

The company also introduces new services and products for ready-to-eat food, wine, camping wood or berries thanks to its local suppliers.

Six new local staff have been hired by the Development Committee.