Here is a good one. What exactly is “local”? Um – I will use the simplest dictionary definition that I could come across.
“Local” implies pertaining to, characteristic of, or restricted to a particular place or particular places.
What is the general characteristic of my community? One thing for sure, it is not static and it has been evolving for some time. It is diverse in all aspects that one would think of. While it used to be classed as “under-privileged”, I disagree that this is still the case. However, due to that background, I find that the local shops remain designed to serve that very “underprivileged” community which relied on welfare benefits. Very cheap alcohol drinks. Scratch cards. Pay-point stations for bill payments and energy top-ups. Stock levels are comparatively lower and cost more than in the bigger supermarkets. The buildings are old, cramped and undoubtedly crumbling. A huge disappointment really…
A true reflection of how times have moved on is the number of car drivers in the community now who do their shopping from the modern, spacious and comfortable supermarket establishments.
Not just that, more people are also taking advantage of online shopping and the delivery services provided by the supermarkets.
It is not all about online shopping and being a car driver you know. People still catch buses and taxis to go to their favourite supermarkets…
Recently, I started using the online energy top-up service, so I no longer need to use the pay-point stations in the local shops.
I think local shops are losing business and should they want to stick around for much longer, they ought to start looking at ways of representing the communities they serve. A brilliant example of how the supermarkets are doing this to stay in business is Morrisons. They have a section on continental commodities. Everyone and anyone can now shop at Morrisons. People are being encouraged to eat healthy nowadays, and our local shops should work on this as well. I prefer going to the supermarkets where I have a choice when it comes to food and household commodities. I also find that I get good deals at these supermarkets.
This article was written by Sithembile Moyo using our Community Reporters website