HOUSTON, Texas -- Janice and Bobby Jucker are the king and queen of disasters. Their business, Three Brothers Bakery, has been through four floods, a fire, and a hurricane. But they have never faced anything like the COVID-19 pandemic.
Three Brothers Bakery first opened in Houston in 1949, but not after a long journey. Bobby's father and uncles were taken by the Nazis and put in concentration camps. At the end of World War II, Bobby's aunt moved to the United States and told her brothers Houston's streets were lined with gold. They took her advice and moved here to open the business.
The Juckers say this pandemic is worse than Hurricane Harvey because it has shut everything down with no end in sight. Just to survive the next twelve weeks with payroll and rent, they need $400,000. That money does not include utilities, insurance, or other costs of running a business.
"The paperwork alone will eat your lunch," said Bobby. The owners of Three Brothers Bakery filed paperwork after each of their previous disasters, and say you have to pay attention to the details. They recommend having someone dedicated to filling out the right forms.
Janice also suggests small business owners take online classes during this time, so they can really understand the financial side of business and what kind of loans are available.
The Juckers say it's important to read your insurance policy.
"It's better than sleeping pills," said Janice. The insurance policy may include coverage and options for businesses during this difficult time.
The best way people can help small businesses is buying products. Just one pecan pie from Three Brothers Bakery supports them, the pecan growers, the business that makes the tin, the business that makes the seal around the pie, and the business that produces the cardboard box.
Janice says the biggest priority now is jobs and keeping people employed.
If you would like to check out Three Brothers Bakery or order from them, visit their website https://3brothersbakery.com.
Three Brothers Bakery fighting to survive through coronavirus
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