The Chaffee’s Got Heart Committee is proud of local businesses, organizations and individuals that have gone above and beyond during the pandemic.
It recently recognized Kaleidoscope Toys not only for its efforts during the pandemic, but also for sponsoring the committee and its campaign.
Owner Donna Cole talked about how the pandemic changed operations at the shop filled with toys, games, books, arts and crafts, jewelry, candy and novelties.
“When all non-essential businesses were shut down last March, we pivoted to doing phone and online orders for curbside pick-up and delivery,” Cole said. “We focused on the safety of our employees and customers with extra cleaning. We (also) focused on stay-at-home activities to help parents who were having to work from home and teach their kids.
“During our busy Christmas season, we had two teams that worked different days so if anyone tested positive, the other team would not have had contact and could keep the store open. And during the summer, we had a chain across the doorway to let people know we were serious about limiting the number of people allowed inside to meet regulations.”
Keeping the community safe, she said, is why they decided to go above and beyond.
“My staff and I have been passionate about keeping our community safe, including kids, teachers, pregnant moms, grandparents, health care workers and customers with health issues,” Cole said. “We wanted the kids to be able to go to school in person, if they felt comfortable to do so.”
Cole also said she sees signs that Chaffee’s Got Heart in businesses enforcing compliance.
“Chaffee’s Got Heart is great campaign to remind everyone to keep doing the things that have helped mitigate the spread of the virus in our county,” she said. “I see Chaffee’s Got Heart signs in most businesses that are enforcing compliance. I think so many people in our community have big hearts and have helped support each other and local businesses throughout this past year.”
Her biggest takeaways from the year revolved around her staff and the community.
“I’ve learned that we have a very resilient team that can adapt to changing circumstances and that we have a very supportive customer base that stepped up to help us through a crazy year,” Cole said. “I’m reminded every day of how grateful I am to live in this wonderful community. Keep up the good work. We’ll get through this together.”