Why an SC Consulting Program?
Sustainable Connections, in 10 years has grown to 550 NW Washington local, independent businesses working to transform and model an economy built on sustainable practices. Programs include a wildly successful Think Local First campaign that has altered the purchasing behaviors of 3 in 5 local households, a Food & Farming program that leads to hundreds of new local food contracts and the launch of new farms every year, a Green Building program that partners with local governments to eliminate barriers to a healthier built environment, an Energy program that drove the community to become the top EPA certified green power community in the nation and is now launching a WA pilot energy efficiency and green jobs program, and a Sustainable Business Development program that results in 89% of business members taking on new sustainable practices each year. The organization has been written up extensively in books and in the national media -- including an NPR Marketplace story that called Bellingham the "epicenter of a new economic model".
We created the SC Consulting program to more effectively provide answers to the questions we get about what we’ve done to build the organization, recruit membership, develop programs and resources, and communicate in ways that drive behavior and purchasing changes in our area. We’ve created systems, policies and program plans that we think are useful for any new community business network with similar goals. Our program is not at all intended to be usable in a ‘cut and paste’ format. Far from that…. we know each community is unique …we have simply attempted to efficiently package tools and information so rather than re-invent the wheel, you can leapfrog in your work. The needs are urgent and our intent is to make sure that people who want to understand and build from any of our work have the information they need to do so.
We also work closely with the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies, (BALLE), a national ‘network of networks’ with a mission to catalyze, strengthen, and connect local business networks focused on building local living economies.