Help Your Co-op THRIVE! Click Here to GoFundMe!

Calling all Local Heroes: join the Coop’s 2019 Capital Campaign

Local heroes & heroines are flexing their muscles to help capitalize the Co-op in a time of great need and great opportunity. There are exciting changes taking place and we need your immediate help to make the Co-op strong for decades to come! We believe the Co-op can be a
marketplace and restaurant that welcomes the entire community, where neighbors gather and taste buds flourish.

The Co-op is at a pivotal moment and it’s a perfect time to help the Co-op meet its full potential through our capital campaign. Our three channels of participation make room for everyone to participate. If you’d like to talk more about what channels make the most sense for you, or if you’d like to get involved in other ways please reach out to Pat Fiero.

Three Ways to Sustain & Grow the Co-op

1.

The most effective long-term solution necessitates consistent shopping at the co-op by members and visitors. Do you know that the average member spends less than $200 a year? Your investment in the community store can be as simple as a pledge to spend as little as $25 dollars a week. Take the pledge and we will acknowledge you on our Footsteps-to-the-Goal campaign. With your commitment we can turn this co-op around to be self-sustaining. Please come in and take part in the pledge and purchase a pre-paid card weekly.

2.

The Co-op does appreciate donations to help to get immediate funds into circulation to address our urgent needs. A donation is perfect for someone who wants to circulate capital into the store and the community and can easily and happily make a financial contribution without the expectation of repayment. You can make your commitment to the Co-op clear by making a GoFundMe donation TODAY: just click here, now!

3.

Another part of the strategy involves members offering loans so that we can invest in improvements and growth from which we will all benefit. Plant the seeds and reap the harvest with interest! Your loan will gain interest and grow right alongside the co-op. (Click here to review the loan terms info sheet.)

Here’s the details –

 

1. CONSISTENT SHOPPING & PRE-PURCHASE CARDS

Take the Pledge and spend $25 a week in the co-op! This will create then maintain the cash flow so we can fill the shelves with everything you desire. You can purchase prepaid cards right at the register or send a check and we will mail them to you.

Not ready to take the pledge, or want to ease in slow, no problem. The cards are available for purchase for anyone. You can think of the prepaid cards as you would a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). The CSA model was designed to help farmers pay for the upfront costs of seeds, machinery and labor at the beginning of the season, before their produce was brought to market. Grocers are in a similar position, as they need to put inventory on the shelf before receiving money for that inventory. Pre-purchase cards are a way of putting some of the unused funds sitting in your bank account month to month (whether that’s $25 or $2,000) to work for the Co-op and its customers, and is an easy way for everyone who shops at the Co-op to participate in its revitalization.

 
For What?
  • Inventory!
  • Cash Flow

Why?

Being able to purchase more inventory will mean more revenue for the Co-op. At the moment, we don’t have enough up-front capital to purchase inventory (which makes it hard for people to shop at the store, creating a vicious cycle).

The good news is that when we have inventory, it sells. The demand is there! Pre-purchase cards are being sold in $25 increments. The intention of the card is to use it all in one purchase and there are no refunds or change back.

 
How?
Purchase them from the cashier at the Co-op! Or write a check to the Leverett Village Co-op and in the memo line, please write “Pre-purchase Cards.” Make sure your return address is legible so that we can mail the pre-purchase cards to you at that address.
 

Checks should be mailed to:

Capital Campaign
Leverett Village Co-op
PO Box 215
Leverett, MA 01054

Once your check has been received and processed, you will receive confirmation via email.

2. DONATE

While the Co-op doesn’t want to rely on donations, they are a huge help both for the long-term sustainability of the Co-op itself and for expanding services and benefits to the community. A donation is perfect for someone who wants to circulate capital into the store and the community to see and experience the results; and for those that can easily and happily make a financial contribution without the expectation of repayment.

For What?
  • To ease the financial burden required to complete the aforementioned cash flow issues
  • To realize much needed improvements
  • To expand affordability and food access
  • To hopefully implement a delivery service for seniors and community members with disabilities
  • To potentially implement a student loan payment support program 

Why

The Co-op is a for-profit business with a social mission, although in the last decade it has barely justified the for-profit title. The Co-op exists for the benefit of its members and the community at large. The intention is to operate a healthy and sustainable business that can continue to provide and increase benefits to members and increase and satisfy customers from all over. There are many aspects of the Co-op that are not monetizable and not profitable that we see as important benefits to cultivate regardless.

This little gem in the woods is a hub of activity where cell phones are put aside and conversations from gardening to grandchildren take place.  Where people look each other in the eye and linger a while. More than just a store, it brings folks from all over together, to share the warmth of friendship and a cup of coffee.

The Co-op is there when you need it in a pinch – when there’s a storm and you need to stock up without making a long trip into the valley, when you need cold and flu medicine fast, or when you run out of an ingredient in the middle of a recipe. The benefits of having a store near you that can come through for your urgent needs as well as offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner, a wine and beer bar, special occasion cakes, delivery service, and oodles of groceries can be something to depend on and worthy of investment and donation.

 
How?
Checks should be made out to the Leverett Village Co-op and in the memo line, please write “Donation.” Please also include your email address in an attached note with the check, so that we can send a confirmation. Checks should be mailed to:

Capital Campaign
Leverett Village Co-op
PO Box 215
Leverett, MA 01054

Once your check has been received and processed, you will receive confirmation via email.

3. LOANS

Click here to see the Loan Terms Info Sheet.
For What?
  • To expand inventory to meet current demand and access bulk pricing
  • To repair and replace aged and malfunctioning equipment (refrigerators, freezers)
  • To transition to a more functional and efficient POS (Point of Sales), accounting, and data sharing systems
  • To expand and renovate the eating area and kitchen into a bistro/pub serving dinner four nights a week
  • Increase kitchen and bar staff
Why?

The Co-op has been undercapitalized and suffered decreasing sales for over a decade. Without capital it has tread water all these years and has not been able to provide consistent goods and services to meet the demand of consumers and community. The opportunity to meet that demand is here, the capital is not.

The great thing about community capital is that as small investors, we have much more control over the outcome of our investments in our local economy than we do with large companies since we are the investors and the members and the consumers making the Co-op what it is and will be. After investing, every shopping trip and meal at the Co-op makes your investment safer.

How?
To invest, first please review the Offering Memorandum (click here to view it) and get in touch with Pat Fiero. Pat can also answer any questions you may have regarding investment. Once you’ve decided how much you’d like to invest and at what term length and interest rate, please complete the Note Agreement (click here to view it) by printing and mailing or scanning/emailing, or by asking Pat to send the DocuSign link so you can complete and sign the agreement online. If you’re printing and mailing your Note Agreement, please mail it along with your check. Your check should be made out to “The Leverett Village Co-op” for the investment amount specified in your signed Note Agreement and in the memo line, please write “Member Loan”. Please send to:
Capital Campaign
Leverett Village Co-op
PO Box 215
Leverett, MA 01054

Once your check and promissory note agreement have been received and processed, you will receive confirmation via email.

OTHER IDEAS?

Please email Pat Fiero and Hendrix Berry if you have additional ideas about how you’d like to be a hero or heroine for the Co-op.

It takes a Village!