When I visited Portland, Oregon this spring for the Summit of Awesome, one of the things that struck me the most was how passionate folks were about supporting local businesses. A group of self-professed "neighborhood-business huggers" are taking that passion a step further. The new Supportland card rewards folks for shopping at participating local businesses.
Here's a quickie video that explains how the program works:
I really like how they encourage you to use the points to build community even further.
Not only does shopping local help support small businesses and keep money in the community, local businesses are often more eco-friendly than large, national chains. That small coffee roaster, donut shop, or bookstore has a much more vested interest in being kind to the environment and the community than a big box store with national offices somewhere far away.
I'd love to see programs like this pop up in other cities! If there's a local business rewards program in your town, tell us all about it in the comments!