Common Good’s new ‘Buy Credit’ feature to help local businesses

  • Dawn Jenner, right, and Sue Bradford purchase gift cards from The People’s Pint employee Sandy Bailey in Greenfield in March. The restaurant, which now offers takeout amid the COVID-19 pandemic, is one of the local businesses that will benefit from Common Good’s new “Buy Credit” feature. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 5/25/2020 1:51:05 PM

As the state prepares to reopen in four phases, Common Good Operations Director Ivan Ussach believes embracing a “pay-it-forward” concept is a great idea.

Therefore, the nonprofit has launched a “Buy Credit” tool for consumers who want to support local businesses before they reopen, so that they will survive and even thrive once they do.

“We need to be proactive in helping our local businesses,” he said simply.

When using Buy Credit, customers pay now and the business gets the money immediately, Ussach explained. Then, when the business reopens, each time a customer pays with his or her Common Good card, he or she will receive an automatic 50 percent rebate until the money on the card is used up. Ussach said the customer ends up paying the regular price and the business gets the full amount — the business just gets some now, when its needed most, instead of later.

The Common Good payment system tracks the credits and payments automatically, Ussach noted. Customers can also see all participating Common Good businesses in their region on one convenient page.

“This Buy Credit feature ... reflects core values of community resilience and caring about the people around us,” Common Good Director William Spademan said. “Now more than ever, we want to do everything we can to encourage mutual support at the community level. It’s really about neighbors helping neighbors in small ways to make a big impact, without depending on government assistance. It’s how we build an economy that works for everyone — a common good economy.”

The People’s Pint in Greenfield, one of many local restaurants that were forced to close or change their business models to continue serving customers during the pandemic, is one such business that will benefit from Common Good’s Buy Credit feature. Owner Alden Booth said he “appreciates the incredible goodwill that Common Good customers are extending to us by buying credits for our restaurant that we can use now and redeem back to them over time. It is a double whammy of support.”

Anyone can join Common Good for free, and then can participate in the Buy Credit program. For a list of participating local businesses, visit bit.ly/2Xg5sm7.

Reach Anita Fritz at 413-772-9591 or afritz@recorder.com.


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