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Here’s How Shopping Locally Helps Build Stronger Communities

So often people will say to me “I’ll tithe* when I can afford it”. Yet, that is backwards! The truth is, you will afford it when you tithe. The Universe has a way of giving back with interest to those who give. But in these harsh economic times, when so many of us are in debt, it is hard to give. In her book, Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating, Jane Goodall suggests buying organic as a means of tithing. She points out that by spending a few dollars extra you are giving back to local farmers and also helping to sustain the earth. I thought her idea was brilliant and ­immediately proceeded to tell anyone who would listen in an effort to get the word out. When put this way, it makes great sense to choose organic. After all, we all want to give back – and when it comes to buying organic there are additional health benefits for ourselves too.
Then it occurred to me, shopping locally can also be looked at exactly the same. When you shop at the big chain stores, you may (or may not) save a few dollars, However, only thirteen dollars out of every 100 dollars spent stays in the community. The same amount spent with a local ­merchant has more than three times the impact!

Every local purchase helps to strengthen the local economy, creates good will, ­develops employment opportunities, brings a greater supply of goods and services into the town and builds a vibrant and dynamic ­community. In short, when you shop ­locally, you are helping to build a stronger community, – and you will ultimately benefit from a stronger ­community! When you shop locally you also develop valuable friendships and, again, you will ultimately benefit from doing business with people who come to know you by name!
Remember, these are the people who sponsor your children’s teams. Small businesses truly are the backbone of a thriving society.

The Villager is dedicated to ­promoting local shopping among the ­residents of  Oakville and  Burlington. Our ­magazine is made possible through the ­sponsorship of local ­businesses, a group of dedicated, creative, hard working, friendly people. Please feel confident, when you do business with them, that you are ­getting the very best service and value.

You CAN make a difference! Happy shopping.

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