1K Churches Campaign
The 1k Churches Campaign, announced July 2012 at the Clinton Global Initiative, aims to galvanize a movement in the faith-based community and engage local churches across the United States to use their assets to strengthen local economies.
The idea is powerful: to mobilize 1000 churches to invest in micro-businesses in their local communities.
Imagine if over the next 5 years each of these congregations made 4 micro loans a year – 20,000 businesses would be positively affected and tens of thousands of local jobs would be created. According to the Association for Enterprise Opportunity, there are over 25 million micro-businesses in the United States. If each were to hire ONE person, it would effectively end the US crisis of unemployment.
If there is among you anyone in need, a member of your community in any of your towns within the land that the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hard-hearted or tight-fisted toward your needy neighbor. You should rather open your hand, willingly lending enough to meet the need, whatever it may be. (Deuteronomy 15:7-8 )
Churches will have collective, theologically grounded experience of understanding themselves in the context of their economic relationships.
Churches will be better equipped to understand their call as an economic being, to make choices about how they want to participate in the economy and to define their roles in creating God’s economy.
Why Churches & Microloans?
3) There are a wide range of approaches that fit the different styles, preferences of a congregation. You can invest through a simple direct relationship with a business leader or through the complex intermediation of a credit union.
4) There is an ordinariness to the investment. This is the business next door.
5) The need is clear and hard felt. Small businesses still feel the credit crunch and need access to alternative types of capital. And, small business is a path to job creation