Ledyard National Bank

Ledyard National Bank Sponsors 19 Days

Local First Alliance isn’t just about keeping money in our local economy; it’s also about giving back to the community we call home. Local First Alliance member Ledyard National Bank will be standing behind this statement on December 1 as an underwriting sponsor of The 19 Days of Norwich campaign. This holiday local-spending campaign, created by Dan Fraser of Dan & Whit’s in Norwich, raises donations for the Upper Valley Haven, which provides shelter, food, and services for people experiencing homelessness. Now in its second year, Local First Alliance businesses will help Norwich expand this exciting project throughout the Upper Valley.

The premise of the campaign is simple. This December 1-20, participating locally owned businesses will donate 1% of their sales of a specific product, service, or their overall sales to the Haven. Through a series of events, discounts, and promotions, shoppers are encouraged to shop locally and make their dollars count. As this year’s holiday season fast approaches, Local First Alliance members from throughout the Upper Valley have joined the effort to promote shopping locally and encourage this important reinvestment in our community.

The concept arose in 2013 when Fraser discovered that the Haven was experiencing a severe shortage of food around the holiday season. He quickly mobilized the town of Norwich and its local business owners, recruiting Norwich businesses to donate “1% for the Haven” in what became “The 19 Days of Norwich.” The effort raised $27,860 and 12.5 tons of food for the Haven. This year, with Ledyard National Bank as a sponsor and the participation of Local First Alliance members, we can expect another impressive outcome.

“I am doing this because we need to be aware that right here in Norwich, and throughout the Upper Valley, hunger is an issue for many people,” said Fraser, a Local First Alliance member. “I started this because our friends and neighbors are the ones in need – these are the people who we work with, children who attend our schools, families that live next door to you or just down the road. I am thrilled that Local First Alliance is pairing with us in this effort. People are slowly realizing that supporting local business matters. Money spent locally stays local.”

On top of their donation, Dan & Whit’s is also selling a cookbook with all proceeds going to the Haven. Breakfasts, canned food drives, wine tastings, open houses, and holiday specials will be available throughout Norwich and the Upper Valley during the 19 days. Shoppers can stop by Dan & Whit’s or a participating businesses. You can find a calendar of ongoing events here.

Local businesses interested in joining “The 19 Days of Norwich” campaign may contact Emily@VitalCommunities.org.

Mascoma Savings Bank

Champion Member Mascoma Savings Bank

Local First Alliance works to support our local independent businesses. I often hear people say, “I shop locally when I can,” or “There a few local restaurants I always go to.” My response to that is, “GREAT! Those are wonderful ways to reinvest in our community.”

I do, however, know that it’s not realistic to expect someone to buy EVERYTHING locally. Local First Alliance simply asks you to “Think Local First” whenever possible. Buying local isn’t always about the items you purchase – it’s about the service providers you choose, too.

Mascoma Savings Bank is one of Local First Alliance’s Champion members. A mutually owned business, Mascoma answers directly to its customers and puts significant time and money into the community. I wanted to see for myself just how this bank reinvests our hard-earned, local dollars, so I Googled “Mascoma Savings Bank Sponsorships.”The first page of results showed Mascoma’s support of the Hartland Farmers’ Market, the Upper Valley Haven, the Upper Valley Music Center, and the Vermont Housing Finance Agency. This is our local bank supporting our local causes. Not national organizations, but the small ones that are close to home.

As a Local First Alliance member, Mascoma Savings Bank has made a commitment to support our region’s economy. All of our members have. So, the next time you are thinking of a place to shop, or eat, OR bank, we ask that you take moment and “Think Local First.” Keep your money hard at work in the Upper Valley.