A $2.6 billion downpayment

How Rhode Island could use ARPA money to build community wealth and resilience Congress passed the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to “help turn the tide on the pandemic, address its economic fallout, and lay the foundation for a strong and equitable recovery.”[1] The ARPA consists of over 84 unique programs distributed across…

Community Investment SWOT for RI

It takes an ecosystem to build community wealth. No person or place exists in static isolation, so we need to understand the connections and dependencies between entrepreneurs, investors, support resources, policies, funding streams, and the broader environment. Participants in the Local Investment 101 Workshops worked together to develop a SWOT analysis of our community investment…

Join us to talk about Community Investing in RI

To build a just local economy and strengthen our community resilience, we need a more robust set of tools. Local investing is one potential solution. On Wednesday, August 4, Local Return is hosting a community planning session around local investment.  We’ll continue the conversation we started at Local Investment 101, a workshop series with Community…

Community Conversation with Chloe Chassaing

Cooperative fans and caffeine aficionados rejoiced when White Electric Coffee at 711 Westminster Street reopened in May. Over the past year, a group of former employees from Providence’s beloved coffee shop formed the worker-owned CUPS Cooperative and purchased the business from the former owner.  Worker-owner Chloe Chassaing joined Local Return directors Raul Figueroa and Josh Daly to…

Join us for Local Investment 101!

Rhode Island’s small businesses have been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic and related shutdowns. As we plan for the revival of our businesses, our economies, and community life, local investing is one potential solution.  That’s why Local Return is hosting Local Investing 101, a workshop series with Community Economist Michael H. Shuman, author of five…

Community Conversation with Jazandra Barros

“It’s really amazing to me to see how much folks are growing sometimes on very small pieces of land,” noted Jazandra Barros, Community Outreach Coordinator for Southside Community Land Trust.  SCLT would know. They’ve been around for 40 years, building infrastructure for urban gardens and farms. Jazandra spoke with Local Return director Sue AnderBois about…

Community Conversation with Eva Agudelo

Eva Agudelo, founder and executive director of Hope’s Harvest RI, joined Local Return director Jessica David to talk about the importance of a strong local food ecosystem. Hope’s Harvest mobilizes volunteers to recover surplus food from local farms and distributes it to local hunger relief agencies. The organization has expanded rapidly over its three years,…

Community Conversation with Andy Posner

Andy Posner, president and CEO of the Capital Good Fund, joined Local Return board member Jessica David to talk about the lessons he’s learned over 12 years of providing an alternative to predatory payday loans. Capital Good Fund has saved clients an estimated $5.5 million, and borrowers increase their credit scores by an average of…