Campaign gives good reasons to shop locally

There’s a new movement afoot to keep wealth circulating in communities called the Ten Percent Shift.

There’s a new movement afoot to keep wealth circulating in communities called the Ten Percent Shift, and it’s getting local business people excited.

Many of us already know that it has been a tough time for local retailers, but many of us lured by the call of what appears to be a wider selection of seemingly cheaper goods out of town might not understand the broader effects of keeping shopping dollars in Nakusp.

The idea behind the Shift is to try to keep ten per cent of money spent outside of the community in town, and the website gives not only good reasons to try but also some handy worksheets to figure out what your ten per cent is.

The ten good reasons to search locally for goods and services found on the Ten Percent Shift website start with the fact that spending money in your community keeps the money there. The website says that nearly 70 per cent of money spent locally stays in town, as opposed to zero when money is spend out of town.

Spending money locally encourages shop owners to improve service and selection, the website also says, and allows for more local ownership and jobs.

Instead of having everyone in town driving to the Okanagan or Nelson and Castlegar, the website says shopping locally is also greener, with gas-burning trips being made by truckers rather than individuals in private cars.

Local businesses are more prone to support community groups than those at a distance, Ten Percent Shift points out. As many people in non-profit groups around town know, local businesses are frequently behind donations of more than just money.

Shopping locally also supports a thriving community centre where people are not only spending money but also visit and share time, too. In a way, shopping locally is also about building more of a sense of community.

The Ten Percent Shift campaign isn’t aiming for a total transformation over night, but asks people to consider spending ten per cent more in town. If you factor the cost of gas to get to a larger urban centre replete with shopping choices, that’s really not that much.

On Wednesday, Dec. 19 you’ll have more time than usual to up your percentage because many Nakusp merchants are staying open late for your shopping pleasure. Come find those last minute Christmas presents and spend your money on your community.