Show Me the Money - Transparency with (our) Currency

In January, 2019 we took the step to open a bank account with Sunrise Banks, after doing some research on local banks that reflect our values around investing and giving back to community. Though it would or might have been more convenient to choose a bank that was proximal to one of our homes, we decided to prioritize values above convenience. Read up on Sunrise Banks and their position in the community here.

With currency we must have integrity, and so beginning well was crucial. We applied for a federal EIN number, and filed for non-profit status with the Secretary of State, and opened a bank account with all of the board of trustee members (at the time) putting enough money to equal $100 necessary to open the account on January 29. Save for a few undetected charges of $1.50 for paper statements (until that was corrected) the balance remained at $100 with the only expense being a video we previewed together with a small group in February (called Inhabit – worth watching if you haven’t). This brought our balance to $93.51.

Also in February we became members of the Fellowship for Intentional Communities for a year for $50 which brought our balance down to $43.51. This purchase gives us the ability to create a profile for the first Ecovillage project we support, and access to the entire history of print resources for their Communities magazine. Rich, rich resources for the us as we navigate next steps for the TCEVP.

We are also using Giving Fuel as a platform to collect monthly supporter donations on a sliding scale of $10-$15 which the board of trustees all contributes to and we have a few new members doing the same. Wonderfully, two friends of Peter Piche’s decided to donate to our work without ever wanting or needing to be a part of it. That was a total of $125 plus our own donations from two months of pledging. On March 4, an influx of $291.14 was deposited into our account bringing our balance to $333.15 but…

To apply for Federal non-profit status we needed to submit more paperwork and fees, so on March 11, we paid $275 to the Federal Government and are awaiting official notification of our non-profit status as a 501c3 to further the work. This allows us to avail ourselves of grants and donations that have (evolving but usually beneficial) implications in the tax code. As of March 26th, 2019 our balance stands at $58.15.

Finally, it’s important to note, that individuals underwrote many of the sundry items, workshops, and subscriptions (Meetup.com) that seemed necessary to gain some traction. It is our intention to remunerate the expenses of those individuals to create equity going forward and operate from a basis of a strong collective position around finances rather than rely on the generosity of a few.