Sustainable CommunitiesThe communities of fishers, farmers, farm workers and marginalized rural people with whom Southern Mutual works are all interconnected with our land and waters. When family farms are diminished, so is the local economy. Economists tell us that for every farm that goes under, seven small businesses in local towns fold. As fisher families are forced out of their way of life and disperse to find low-paying jobs elsewhere, strong ties to the earth are severed as are ties to family and culture. Welfare rolls increase.
However, when marginalized rural people become new homeowners, and learn how to maintain their property, grow their assets and use the power of their voices in the local community, there is a ripple effect of improvement in every part of the community. Recognizing this, SMHA , through its Sustainable Communities Initiative, has intentionally built into all of its work the skills and learnings that will enable a long-term (sustainable) quality future for individuals, families and communities.
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