Local First Blog

Get to know Northern Initiatives

Jun 22, 2022 9:30:00 AM / by Northern Initiatives posted in Inclusive Economy, Business Resources

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Know Your Lender: Northern Initiatives

Where do they work: All 83 counties in Michigan

What they are: A CDFI! Huh?

Northern Initiatives is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that focuses on providing loans when family wealth is not an option. They provide the types of loans that banks won’t do, can’t do, or shouldn’t do. Typically this is because of low credit scores or lack of equity or collateral to meet traditional bank standards.

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6 Ways to Build Local & Sustainable Habits

Jan 3, 2022 1:06:00 PM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Inclusive Economy, Business Resources, Move Your Money, People First Economy Habits

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If you've been following the Local First program for a while, you know we're all about creating opportunities to support local and amplify our membership base. It's these businesses that keep our money close to home, employ our neighbors, and hold themselves accountable to our community. And while we may sound like a broken record, we'll keep saying it: They need your ongoing support.

We’ve learned that building a People First Economy takes more than a single action, one time. But it doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as changing everything all at once. We encourage you to instead think about a single action as the beginning of forming a habit. A good habit.

New habits take anywhere from 18 to 254 days to form (European Journal of Social Psychology), which is why we’re going to provide resources all year long. 

Need some inspiration? Here are six local and sustainable habits to include in your New Year's Resolutions!

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Nourish our Community

Oct 8, 2021 3:15:00 PM / by Local First posted in Eat Local, Local Business, Inclusive Economy, Business Resources

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Food naturally brings people together. Whether it’s making a meal, supporting a farmer, sharing a recipe, or celebrating a special occasion: food is communal.

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Lake Michigan Credit Union Puts People First

Sep 28, 2021 10:15:00 AM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Inclusive Economy, Business Resources, Move Your Money

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Local banks and credit unions are part of a toolkit of sustainable solutions that drive change in our place-based economies. To dig deeper, Local First connected with Lake Michigan Credit Union earlier this month in an effort to learn how they keep our dollars close to home and create people-first solutions.
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Presenting: People First Economy Podcast

Sep 14, 2021 10:25:00 AM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Inclusive Economy, Business Resources

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The People First Economy Podcast is here to bring you insight into how we, our businesses, and our partners are all working towards building and participating in a People First Economy! You’ll hear stories, ideas, tools, campaigns, and whatnot that align with our efforts to build this new economy!

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GROWing a People First Economy

Aug 23, 2021 10:15:00 AM / by Local First posted in Inclusive Economy, Business Resources

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Thank you for joining Local First for the third of four Rebuilding our Local Economy webinar events! Each quarter, the Local First team brings new resources and technical support to you by tapping the expertise of our community.

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Featherlight: Not Just a Website

Jul 27, 2021 10:15:00 AM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Business Resources

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Get to know Featherlight

Raise your hand if you're a small business owner or employee looking for a better way to run your subscription based website. Good news! There's a local way to create and revamp your website or ecommerce site - Featherlight! Learn more about this service from our Q&A with owner Tyler Doornbos. 

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Shop Local with LOCUS

Jul 9, 2021 10:30:00 AM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Business Resources

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Have you seen shopLOCUS.com yet? It's time to give it a whirl! LOCUS offers an e-commerce platform to find and support local, independent businesses. Your Local First team is a big fan and we hope you enjoy learning more about the people and the vision behind this awesome platform. Check out our Q&A with LOCUS owners Jill DeJonge and Eric Haslinger: 

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The Future of Work

Jun 9, 2021 9:30:00 AM / by Local First posted in Local Business, Business Resources

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Thank you for joining Local First for the second of four Rebuilding our Local Economy webinar events! Each quarter, the Local First team brings new resources and technical support to you by tapping the expertise of our membership community.

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Northern Initiatives working to fix PPP disparity

May 5, 2021 9:12:01 AM / by Northern Initiatives posted in Inclusive Economy, Business Resources

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Did you miss out on the first round of the Payroll Protection Program? Northern Initiatives can help!

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