31 Ways to Jumpstart the Local Economy by Sarah Van Gelder

AT HOME

  1. Rent out a room in your home, or swap space for gardening, child or elder care, or carpentry.
  2. Buy less so you can buy higher quality. Buy from companies that “internalize” costs by passing along to you the cost of living wages, low carbon footprints, or organic production.
  3. Take your money out of predator banks and put it into a credit union, local bank, or an institution like Shorebank Pacific that supports sustainable businesses.
  4. Pay off debts. Try life without credit cards.
  5. Downsize your home and shrink your mortgage.
  6. Fix things. Mend clothing, repair the vacuum, fix the car—instead of replacing them. Or give them away on Freecycle.org.
  7. Invest with passion. Know where your money is and what it’s up to. Go for a living return that builds your community. Or invest in tangible things like a prepaid college fund or a piece of land.
  8. Shorten the supply chain. Pick the wild greens and extra fruit growing in your neighborhood. If you can’t do that, then buy direct from a farmer. If you can’t do that, then look for local produce in season at your locally owned grocers.
  9. Support other people’s local economies by urging your representatives in Congress to cancel debts to poor countries (see www.jubileeusa.org).
  10. Find a place, put down roots, and stay put. Get to know people from other generations. Turn off the TV and talk to friends and neighbors.
  11. Support local green businesses rather than distant energy conglomerates by insulating your house, upgrading windows, and installing solar.

Read the rest on YES magazine: http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/the-new-economy/31-ways-to-jump-start-the-local-economy

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