How to invest in your community
I live in Glendale, Arizona, a suburb of Phoenix, and I invest in it, and I recommend that you do, too.
No, I'm not a wealthy investor, throwing bags of money around, I'm an ordinary citizen who wants the place where I hope to spend the rest of my life to be the best it can be. And my investment takes many forms, including spending my money locally, but it's so much more than that.
I cherish my 'hood. I'm not one of those creepy guys who peeks out of his window suspiciously, but I keep an eye on my neighborhood. I know the difference between bad guys and people who are just doing what they need to do, and aren't perfect. So I'm not going to "freak out" if people put their trash cans out incorrectly. A few months ago there was a dog that barked all day and all night, week after week, and I invested my time to find out how to make it stop. This morning as I type this I'm reminded at how wonderful it is to have the windows open and not hear that. I don't expect my neighborhood to be as silent as the desert, but I also know that certain things begin a slide down, and if caught early can make a difference.
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I invest in my community by caring for my house. I just paid to have my trees trimmed, I pay for water to keep plants growing, a few years ago I paid to have my house painted. I have no plans to ever move out of this house, so it isn't about "equity" - it's about where I live, what I see, my community, my world.
I so often hear people saying that "they" should do something about it. As if there's a "they" out there, with unlimited money to spend, but too evil to do so. Most of these people know nothing about how communities work, they couldn't name their councilperson, don't even know who the mayor is. Just "they".
Well I can tell you who "they" are: they're us. They're you and me. If you care about a place, invest it it, because if you don't, no one else will.
Posted by Brad Hall