C-W.org Blog

How a credit union is increasing access to affordable, responsible financial services

March 4th, 2015 -- kparker
An interview with Steve Zuckerman of Self-Help Federal Credit Union

Founded in 1980, Self-Help works to create and protect ownership and economic opportunity for all, especially minority, women-headed, rural and low-wealth families and communities.  In 2006 Self Help expanded into California, and in 2008 launched Self-Help Federal Credit Union to increase access to affordable, responsible financial services in low-income communities. Read more about How a credit union is increasing access to affordable, responsible financial services...

Cooperation Among Cooperatives Rebuilds Equitable Food System

March 2nd, 2015 -- kparker
Trade group, P6, aims to uplift small, local and cooperative producers
P6 Logo

Grocery or “natural food” co-ops pioneered promoting local and organic foods, helping to propel these concepts into the mainstream. But spurred by expanding consumer demand, large corporations now dominate the market and have increased pressure on independent, grocery co-ops around the country. Today, the labels of organic, local, or natural do not necessarily reflect a more equitable distribution of wealth and profits. Read more about Cooperation Among Cooperatives Rebuilds Equitable Food System...

A Fair Share: Worker Cooperatives and the Growth of Shared Capitalism

February 5th, 2015 -- bwythe
A growing number of business owners are making the decision to turn over ownership to their employees.

This past summer, in a sea-side town in Maine, the state’s largest worker cooperative was created. As a retirement gift, small business owners Vernon and Sandra Seile turned over ownership of their retail businesses to their 40 employees. Ashley Weed, a dutiful worker of the Seiles for 11 years, stated, “I am happy they actually sold it to us, so we don’t have to start at the bottom again.” Read more about A Fair Share: Worker Cooperatives and the Growth of Shared Capitalism...

Nebraska’s Community-Owned Electricity System

January 14th, 2015 -- violeta
In Nebraska, 121 publicly-owned utilities, 10 cooperatives, and 30 public power districts provide electricity to a population of around 1.8 million people.

In the United States, there is one state, and only one state, where every single resident and business receives electricity from a community-owned institution rather than a for-profit corporation. It is not a famously liberal state like Vermont or Massachusetts. Rather, it is conservative Nebraska, with its two Republican Senators and two (out of three) Republican members of Congress, that has embraced the complete socialization of energy distribution.

Community Foundations Move to Adopt a New Anchor Mission

January 9th, 2015 -- violeta
Philanthropy must address structural economic barriers if “full livelihood, democracy and opportunity for all” are to be achieved.

Crossposted form Shelterforce

According to the Foundation Center’s 2014 Key Facts report, community foundations today have nearly $65 billion in assets, more than 9 percent of all foundation assets ($715 billion). As noted at a recent White House conference, over 700 community foundations operate nationwide. Yet while the first community foundation inCleveland was founded in 1914, their present-day prominence is fairly new. As recently as 1990, U.S. community foundation assets totaled $6.6 billion. Even after adjusting for inflation, that means a six-fold increase in assets in two dozen years. The number of community foundations has also more than doubled over that period.

A Wave Is Rising

January 7th, 2015 -- violeta
Community foundations are seeing growing activity in building community wealth.

Crossposted from Stanford Social Innovation Review

You can feel the toe of the tsunami,” said one person in the circle. “There’s a great wave rising, and you can feel the power of it, even though it’s just beginning.” The time was mid-December 2014, and I was seated with 20 others in a circle at a San Francisco gathering of community foundations wanting to learn more about impact investing as a tool for building community wealth. Someone else shared a new report on Millennials, and how they are seeking jobs and investments with meaning. There in the room, we could feel the power of something profoundly new arising.

What is Community Wealth Building and Why is it so Important?

December 8th, 2014 -- violeta
CWB builds on local talents, capacities and institutions, rebuilding capital to strengthen and create locally-owned family and community owned businesses.

Crossposted from Veris Wealth Partners

More than a decade ago, my colleagues and I at The Democracy Collaborative began using a term for a new kind of economic development – Community Wealth Building. For years, the term was so uncommon that it almost invariably appeared within quotation marks when used.

Today, a Google search identifies 124,000 entries and is growing daily.

Democracy Collaborative Offers Research Associate Position

December 8th, 2014 -- dave
Focused on the interesection of community wealth building and healthcare
This position would support The Democracy Collaborative’s Community Wealth Building Initiative—community-wealth.org—with a primary focus on connecting the fields of community economic development, public health and healthcare. This position offers a unique opportunity to advance innovative, multi-sector policy and best practices that can have a transformative impact on local economies and low-income communities.