Can you do me a favor?

Did you know that asking for and returning favors is good for your community? Indeed, research shows that favor exchange is one of the surest ways to build social capital. People enjoy helping each other, and when helping and reciprocating become part of a culture—magic happens. Communities bursting with social capital cooperate better, have more fun, and build capacity to complete projects that improve the lives of the folks who live there.

That’s what makes community-based crowdfunding platforms like The Local Crowd so powerful. The platform becomes  a venue for digital barn raising, where members of the community can show up for each other over and over again—sometimes asking and sometimes reciprocating. Serendipity Books & Antiques in Evanston, Wyoming gives us one example of how Paying it forward can become a way of life. After their successful crowdfunding campaign, they decided to donate the proceeds of their tip jar each month to a local nonprofit. Doing good does feel good—and like the Chinese proverb tells us, it’s the kind of pleasure that does not wear out.

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