Duluth salon owner helps local businesses and homeless community during COVID-19 pandemic

Updated: April 03, 2020 05:42 PM

A local Duluth business owner saw an opportunity to give back to businesses like hers while also helping those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Adeline Wright, the owner of Duluth hair salon 'Adeline' knows exactly what challenges businesses like hers are facing right now, but that didn't stop her from helping her local community. She did this by reaching out to her friends at Great Lakes Gear Exchange to see what kind of inventory they had in camping gear to purchase for homeless shelters in the community.

Wright said she saw a post online of local homeless shelters seeking help in getting sleeping bags and tents for the homeless community. 

"There was lots of stuff available at Great Lakes Gear Exchange so my friends and I were able to chip money together and buy quite a bit of gear and then I trusted that Dorothy Day House would really put that stuff to good use quickly, and CHUM as well," said Wright.

Some of those friend who helped her pay for the gear were medical workers who are on the front lines of the pandemic. They each put in $250 to purchase the inventory.

"My business partner Brooke Wetmore loaded up and she filled the back of her car up. They essentially bought out all of our two, three and four person tents, sleeping bags, and sleeping pads," said Emily Richey, the co-owner of Great Lakes Gear Exchange.

Richey also said the great thing about this purchase is that everything at the gear shop is consignment. Small portions support the business and those who bring in the gently used gear to the store also get a significant portion of the funds once the items sells.

Wright said this was win-win situation because with this effort she and her friends were able to support local businesses like Great Lakes Gear Exchange -- and also support people in the community experiencing homelessness.

"Every single bit is helping and I'm trying to be very diligent with not letting the despair of the big picture and global reality take away from my ability to act locally. I think we have a lot of power here to extend each dollar to most local places we can to support the most people possible," said Wright.

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