This week a delightful phone interview and an invitation to share the wisdom and passion of Carol Peppe Hewitt, a woman dedicated to creating bioregional financing opportunities for small farmers and craftsmen through Slow Money.
Fast money would be your money, that you have no control over. This is sitting in an account, or funds sitting in traditional banks. This money is being move around in ways that would make your head spin, but probably won’t help you or your neighbor or your community much because it is spread all over the world. Slow money is money you have in your possession and you get to choose where it is invested.
Carol has taken this idea and grown it locally in North Carolina where she has raised over two million dollars in slow money that has been re-invested in her community. Carol will be in Coeur d’Alene on Thursday to share her ideas and on Friday at the Rural Roots conference in Moscow.
Carol was asked to compile some their success stories and present some tools for us to use to get some of these solutions functioning in our bioregion. Her book is called “Financing our Foodshed / Growing Local Food with Slow Money.
Here is one small success story attributed to Slow Money in North Carolina. It involves a meat packer who needed $500 for a new label machine, a market that owed him money, and a loyal customer who wanted to help. No Banking officers anywhere nearby.
(Helped with the loan in the story above, and received a $500 Slow Money loan to refinance it’s debt with low-interest local funds.)
“Farming has many joys, but steady cash flow is not one of them. Withington and his wife, needed to upgrade their meat packing labels to meet regulatory standards. This would cost $500. Meanwhile, Withington tells me, the Chatham Marketplace owed him money for some of his meat.
“An elegant solution was arranged: A regular shopper at Chatham Marketplace loaned Withington the $500. The grocery in turn issued five $100 gift cards to the lender, thus redirecting the debt the store owed the Withingtons who then issued a gift certificate to the lender to cover the interest payment, plus he made a small donation to The Abundance Foundation, the fiscal sponsor of Slow Money NC.”
“So, basically, we took out the loan, paid off the loan, collected debt and the Marketplace got rid of debt, all in a five-minute transaction,” Withington says. ( Quoted from Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701)
(Helped with the loan in the story above, and received a $400k Slow Money loan to refinance it’s debt with low-interest local funds.)
What is a Foodshed?
A “foodshed” derived from “watershed” is basically a local region, or a bioregion.
Carol was asked to compile some their success stories and present some tools for us to use to get some of these solutions functioning in our bioregion. Her book is called “Financing our Foodshed / Growing Local Food with Slow Money. There are a few links below. Carol recommends contacting here for your copy if you are interested. Also in the link department contact information, a link to the NC Slow Food Blog, and a link to more information about Woody Tasch’s book
See links below for more information, connections and ideas.
~ Slowly and surely building resilience in our local economies…