THE BLOG
06/13/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Help Take the Move Your Money Campaign to the Next Level

In the short time since the Move Your Money project started, we've seen the movement grow beyond anything we ever anticipated. It's been an energizing and inspiring three months.

What started out as a conversation around a holiday dinner table among friends has turned into a full-fledged grassroots effort involving thousands of people all over the country who come from all kinds of different political and economic backgrounds. We clearly tapped into a growing outrage with the big Wall Street banks and the financial crisis they created, plus the dissatisfaction with all the inaction in Washington. Ours is the best kind of populism -- beyond political labels and petty turf wars.

And, man, has it taken off. Our website has received millions of hits. Every zip code in the country has been searched on our "bank finder" tool. Hundreds of news outlets and bloggers have picked up on the cause, from ABC's Diane Sawyer to the Chronicle in Crossville, Tenn. We've heard countless stories of individuals leaving their major banks to join community banks and credit unions; we've been awestruck by national polls that show how one-tenth of American adults have started to leave the big banks; we've spoken with local and state government officials from Maryland to New Mexico to Minnesota who are leading the charge to invest state tax dollars in financial institutions that encourage local economic growth instead of shipping money off to Wall Street. We've seen members of Congress join the effort and have had celebrities endorse the idea. We've spoken with religious leaders, grassroots organizers, unions, student groups and countless others who are launching efforts in their communities.

But we've also heard from countless others who need more help, support and resources to get their efforts going. And as much as we've been struck by all that has occurred in the last three months, we've been equally struck by the enormous potential to take this effort to the next level. So, we're reaching out to you.

Up to this point the Move Your Money project has mainly been done on a volunteer basis, with people chipping in their free time when and where they can. But we can only accomplish so much with the skeleton crew we've got, and now we're looking to hire a few full-time staffers and provide them with a modest budget to both put a non-profit organization and structure underneath this effort and really expand it into a national campaign. To do so, we've teamed up with Network for Good, a fundraising site for nonprofit causes.

We know that these are financially difficult times for everyone, but we really hope you'll consider making a donation to this effort. We would love for this movement to really take off -- and take hold with more Americans -- and for that we're asking for your help. Please donate whatever you can. But, please, don't think small. If you can make a large gift, that will help us get this effort staffed and functioning faster -- so that we can encourage more people, businesses, institutions and governments to move their money to local financial institutions that work for them and benefit the community, not just Wall Street.

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Thanks for whatever you can do. Your contributions are tax deductible. If you have any questions about donations, feel free to email us at jmhattem@gmail.com or call 928-814-1092.

Thanks again, and upward we go!