Cherry Republic Giving
Cherry Republic is proud of the following giving programs that we have established in the last decade. Over the years, Cherry Republic has given over $600,000 to good causes in northern Michigan. We are doing our best to preserve the environment and quality of life in the woods, farms and communities of the north. Our philanthropy reflects our core values of generosity and doing our part to make the world better.
One Percent Off The Top
Each year, we donate 1% of our sales and give it to causes that we believe will have a positive influence in our region. A few recipients are:
- The Michigan Land Use Institute's Food and Farming programs
- Friends of the Sleeping Bear Dunes
- Preserve Historic Sleeping Bear
- Homestretch Affordable Housing Agency
- Glen Arbor Township
When someone comes into one of our stores we charge them a refundable 1% tariff on their purchase. This tariff was enacted by the Cherry Republic legislature in 2002. The typical tariff amount on each purchase is 25 cents. This money is set aside and donated to agricultural programs in northern Michigan. Primary focus is on preserving our farmland forever and strengthening the new small farm economy in northern Michigan. Recipients in the past have included:
- Leelanau Conservancy
- Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy
- Institute for Sustainable Living, Art and Design (ISLAND)
- Michigan State Horticultural Research Station
- MLUI's Get Farming program
ISLAND is a non-profit arts and ecology center dedicated to connecting people with nature, art and community. As part of that work, ISLAND is developing a slate of programs designed to double the value and increase the resilience of local agriculture by 2019. Cherry Republic's support has been essential in making that happen. Here are some specifics on three programs Cherry Republic has supported:
- The CRAFT Program (Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training) offers farm interns and beginning farmers a chance to tour area farms, learn a wide variety of management styles and farming techniques, and build the relationships that will support them as they embark on a farming career.
- The Northern Michigan Small Farm Conference -- ISLAND is a planning partner for this annual conference held in Grayling. We are specifically responsible for the new Homesteading Track designed to teach new skills to backyard growers and micro-farmers.
- Skill Swaps - ISLAND hosts a series of skill building workshops for farmers, homesteaders and other folks throughout the year, with topics like cheese making, permaculture, green building, beekeeping and hand tool use.
Together, these programs represent a widespread effort to restore our rural communities. We're not just protecting farmland; we're connecting our community to the skills and culture of sustainable agriculture. We're proud of Cherry Republic's vision - you see the big picture of agricultural preservation, and we're grateful for your support!