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Partnership with Appalachian Regional Commission

Produced by AMLA, Investing in Appalachian Alabama is a 10-minute video featuring success stories in North Alabama communities. The overall purpose of the Investing in Appalachian video is to serve as a promotional tool for the opportunities and benefits of the ARC to the state of Alabama.

AMLA has released a new video promoting funding and investment opportunities available from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), an economic development partnership agency of the federal government and 13 state governments across the Appalachian region. Their mission is to innovate, partner and invest to build communities and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia.

Everyone Has a Story

2020 was an extremely challenging year for the tourism and hospitality industry. As a result of the pandemic, travel came to a near halt, jobs were either lost or put at risk and tourism revenue plummeted. Now, as the pandemic loosens its grip and the public returns to dining out, traveling and becoming more active, the industry is faced with a new challenge: a workforce shortage. Maintaining a quality staff adds yet another layer of complication to an already volatile situation when customer service expectations are at an all-time high and society is filled with people who are easily frustrated, short-tempered and less empathetic. 

The pandemic not only disrupted schedules, professions, supply chains, educational structures and daily behaviors, it upended lives and livelihoods. Today, you could easily talk to multiple people who are trying their best not to fall apart – and you likely have no idea the magnitude of their circumstances. In a world where many of us are struggling silently, kindness matters more than ever. Everyone has a story, and unless we take the time to listen and hear what is being said and – more importantly, what is not being said – we don’t know what a person is experiencing behind the scenes, behind closed doors, behind the forced smile.

Here in North Alabama, we care. We care about the many workers who show up day in and day out to do their jobs to the best of their abilities; and we care about the many visitors who travel to the cities and towns across the North Alabama region for a brief reprieve or to be entertained. To that end, the AMLA has compiled a short video of real people in the tourism and hospitality industry who have a difficult story; yet, the tragedies and challenges surrounding these individuals may not always show in their eyes or on their faces. It is my hope this video will remind everyone that kindness matters and encourage others to always harken back to the Golden Rule: treat others as you would want to be treated.

Whatever you do today, do it with kindness in your heart.