Carmen adapts to make it to the other side of COVID-19 crisis
Six weeks ago, Carmen O'Sullivan never could have imagined how much the world would change because of coronavirus. As the owner of Carmen's Restaurant, she has battled a tough month having to lay off staff, stop parts of the restaurant's operations and switch to a new business model - but she refused to let that get her down. "It's been very stressful," Ms O'Sullivan said. "We have to find ways to keep our business afloat for who knows how long. "We have gone down the takeaway line because that's the only thing we are permitted to do at the moment, and also we are selling our fresh pasta range - at an affordable price because I know everyone is doing it tough - and we have our sauces as well." Ms O'Sullivan was also meant to go to Italy on March 6 to visit her elderly mother. While her family was still saying "come over, come over", she did not want to risk being stuck in quarantine when returning to Australia. "It was already a stretch being away from my business for four weeks," she said. "I did not want to go down that path, so I chose to cancel my holiday." Ms O'Sullivan said she is keeping two staff members on at the moment to help keep the place running, and she added her loyal customers had been a fantastic support system. She encouraged all Tamworth residents to continue to support their local businesses in whatever way they can. "We will get through this, but we have to make sure we all come through it," Ms O'Sullivan said.