Indianapolis Edition

Social and Eco-Conscious Investing and Buying Choices

Investing one’s dollars with a purpose is easier than one might think. Socially conscious investing can mean something different to everyone. For some, it may be investing in stocks of companies that offer a positive footprint in the community and the environment. And, for others, it may mean bypassing the portfolio route and instead directly supporting specific local businesses with purchases based on their operations and what they offer.

When seeking what investment strategy is best, it’s important to know one’s personal values and how one would like to see their dollars impact the community.

Traditional investing, such as buying stocks and creating a diversified portfolio, can be a great way to go, but sometimes one may find the company’s values don’t necessarily align with one’s religious or social beliefs. In the Indianapolis area, there are investment companies that have built their business models around socially conscious approaches to investing. Here is a couple to consider:

Bedel Financial offers investors the opportunity to make a difference in the community by supporting companies that have a positive impact on the local, national and global stages. Socially responsible investing in companies that “do no harm”, such as those that aren’t involved with tobacco or weapons, can serve as a catalyst for making more socially conscious decisions with one’s dollars.

Warnecke & Niemczura Wealth Management Group offers investors an approach that incorporates environmental, social and governance criteria, which is a strategy that’s being used more and more by investors.

Indianapolis-area small businesses are another sector to “invest” dollars for the benefit of the community and environment. Shopping local not only helps the business to thrive, but creates job opportunities and positive impacts that radiate out into the community. Check out these local businesses whose mission is to promote healthy, sustainable lifestyles, while at the same time offering great ways to align with one’s social conscience.

Good Soul Shop is committed to offering customers ways to reduce toxins from their lives with a variety of nearly 100 sustainable products for children, home, bath and beauty. As a business that believes sustainable living should be accessible to everyone, Good Soul Shop was founded by owner Heather Rolinski as “Indiana’s premier sustainable-living online marketplace.”

For nearly 50 years, the Good Earth Natural Food Company has offered Indianapolis-area residents natural products, from food and bulk items to health, beauty and supplements. In addition to products that promote a healthy lifestyle, the Good Earth also offers customers online resources, including a blog that examines everything from recipes and product information to why shopping local is important to the community as a whole.

Global Gifts offers shoppers a unique shopping experience. The nonprofit organization offers fair trade products purchased from fair trade vendors, which means each purchase supports fair wages, safe and dignified working conditions, as well as gender equity for the artisans. Customers may shop online or at any of their four locations, including their Mass Avenue location in downtown Indy. Retail businesses aren’t the only ones embracing socially conscious approaches when crafting their business models.

Ezra’s Enlightened Café strives to offer customers as close to 100 percent organic products as possible. The café recycles and composts as much waste as possible and also use recyclable and biodegradable packaging. The café’s mission, according to owner Audrey Barron, is to “offer enlightened food, wellness products and education” to customers and the community “serving awareness, happiness, vibrant health and culinary bliss” to the community one person at a time.

Local Resources

Bedel Financial, 8940 River Crossing Blvd., Ste. 120, Indianapolis. For more information, call 317-843-1358 or visit BedelFinancial.com.

Warnecke & Niemczura Wealth Management Group, 6235 Carrollton Ave., Indianapolis. For more information, call 317-735-2010 or visit RaymondJames.com/warneckeniemczurawmg/services/services/sustainable-investing.

For more information on Good Soul Shop, visit GoodSoulShop.com.

The Good Earth, 6350 Guilford Ave., Indianapolis. For more information, call 317-253-3709 or visit Good-Earth.com.

For more information, store locations and hours on Global Gifts, visit GlobalGiftsFT.com or email Info@GlobalGiftsFT.com.

Ezra’s Enlightened Café, 6516 Ferguson St., Indianapolis. For more information, call 317-255-3972 or visit EzrasEnlightenedCafe.com.

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