By Alex Gladu, Writer, Independent We Stand
Located in Los Angeles’ backyard, Buy Local Santa Monica represents more than 800 southern California businesses and thousands of local employees. The group supports these businesses with marketing assistance, event discounts and networking opportunities, while highlighting the work that its businesses do for local schools. Maintaining a close a relationship with the local Santa Monica High School, Buy Local Santa Monica encourages the next generation of adult consumers to think about where their spending dollars go.
Buy Local Santa Monica is a joint program of local business advocates and the City of Santa Monica. As such, it’s no surprise that Buy Local Santa Monica works closely with the local school district, supporting schools with its events and campaigns year-round. In its 2015 fiscal year, purchases made at Santa Monica local businesses raised more than $7.5 million for the Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District. That money went toward funding teachers, the Santa Monica High School counselor, textbooks and summer school.
In working with local schools, Buy Local Santa Monica gave more than 150 high school students a Buy Local Challenge: Name three local businesses that you would miss if they disappeared. Students wrote blog posts based on that topic to be featured on Buy Local Santa Monica’s Buy Local Challenge blog. Blog entries laud local pizza places, ice creameries, yoga studios and shops. Buy Local Santa Monica has also invited the entire community to take the challenge and submit their own entries. The result is a long list of glowing reviews for local businesses.
Buy Local Santa Monica estimates that local business purchases generated $45 million for the local community in 2015. Through its work with local schools, Buy Local Santa Monica is likely securing a strong future for local businesses, as high school students learn what it means to shop local. For more information about Buy Local Santa Monica, visit www.buylocalsantamonica.com.
Independent We Stand is dedicated to helping independent businesses across the country engage their communities and encouraging customers to buy local. If you’re a business owner, get buy local resources, tips and news by registering for a business membership. Your business will also be included in our ‘locals only’ search engine and mobile app. If you’re a consumer, take the pledge to buy local to join the movement.