Neighborhood Trusts

Local Return supports the recommendation made by the Rhode Island Foundation’s Make It Happen: Investing in Rhode Island’s Future committee to invest $50 million of American Rescue Plan Act funds in neighborhood trusts. A neighborhood trust is a collection of funds, controlled by members of the community for the long-term benefit of the community. This…

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…

What is community wealth?

Local Return exists to build community wealth. So what is community wealth, and why does it matter?  A community’s wealth comes from the assets that it collectively owns or controls, and which the community uses to care for its place and one another. Community wealth is not just about monetary value that exists or is…

Community Conversation with Karen Figueroa and Pam Jennings

“It’s giving people real power over the money and decisions that impact their community under the assumption that it’s the people that use those spaces and are walking the streets and in the schools every day that…have a pretty good knowledge of what changes and what things they would like to see happen.” This, says…

Community Conversation with Shannon Brawley & Shayna Cohen

“The biggest issue facing our industry is the lack of individuals coming into the industry,” Rhode Island Nursery & Landscape Association Executive Director Shannon Brawley told our board member Sue AnderBois. “And we have such an increasing demand for our services, for our products, as we navigate climate change, as we navigate issues around food…

Community Conversation with Diane Lynch and Nessa Richman

Building wealth and resilience requires a true ecosystem approach. Beyond individual programs or entities, we must understand how factors and players interact with one another.  Local Return director Josh Daly sat down with two experts at systems-level work. Nessa Richman is network director and Diane Lynch is chair of the Rhode Island Food Policy Council,…

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…