Community Wealth Building
Since research shows that employing locals has a greater sustained impact on urban prosperity than any other public initiative, our approach strengthens relationships, builds goodwill in the community and builds greater social and financial stability for both.
Anchor institutions not only have the capacity to bring their own funds to community development but they can also leverage other funds and create bigger projects as well. For example, Gunderson Lutheran Healthcare Systems made a commitment to purchase 20% local food in order to create healthier food for their patients and support local farmers and producers. Then they brought together a number of other stakeholders who were also willing to commit to buying local food and by convening this larger group of partners, they could support the creation of the Fifth Season Co-operative Food store that purchases local vegetables, meat, and dairy products. This served their health goals while also enhancing the vibrancy of the local economy. This is just one of the many illustrations of ways that anchor institutions have been able to impact low wealth communities and these strategies are just beginning to unlock the vast potential of anchor institutions.
In Spring, 2015, we had a 2 day Community Wealth Building Roundtable with community leaders and service providers, anchors, and funders. The two-day Community Wealth Building Roundtable involved approximately 40 to 50 local leaders (along with selected outside specialists to help display what is going on elsewhere). The goal of the Roundtable was to put the community wealth idea powerfully before Durham’s leaders, to explore ways in which wealth-building strategies might be implemented or expanded through a local effort, and simultaneously help
Our team at Solution Generators Network is committed to a “new paradigm” of community economic development that extends to previously marginalized communities in ways that utilize their talents and tap into their desires and aspirations. We feel that unemployed people are not burdens on society but rather untapped resources.The goal, over time, is to influence and shape how community obligations are construed so that all community leaders come to take responsibility for reducing the existing income disparities in significant ways over time.