A social enterprise is starting a Brighton gift voucher scheme aimed at helping keep money in the local economy.
Goodmoney, a community interest company (CIC), is starting the scheme to help independent local businesses across Brighton and Hove.
The gift vouchers will be available and valid to spend in all participating outlets from Thursday 24 September.
More than 100 local, independent businesses have signed up to date, with more expected over the coming months. They include HiSbe, Lagoon Watersports, Boulder Brighton and Kooks.
The council-backed not-for-profit enterprise is also starting a campaign to redirect £100,000 of spending away from large high street chains and back into local independent businesses by Christmas and £1 million by 2020.
Caroline Lucas, the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: “This is a fantastic project that will be a real boost to the wonderful independent businesses in Brighton and Hove.
“Brighton has a thriving local business scene. They’re the backbone of our local economy and the lifeblood of our city. They’re integral to the health, wellbeing and economic stability of our local communities.
“This scheme will keep money in the local economy and help build upon Brighton’s global reputation as a centre for enterprise and creativity.”
Goodmoney managing director Dan Webb said: “Goodmoney gift vouchers are a great example of what Brighton and Hove’s local businesses can achieve when they come together.
“Collectively, they have so much more to offer than any high street chain store.
“We’re incredibly excited to launch our campaign to use Goodmoney gift vouchers to drive £1 million into the local economy by 2020.
“It’s a great way for the whole community to actively support and celebrate the independent businesses that make our neighbourhoods such brilliant places to live, work and play.”
Brighton and Hove City Council leader Warren Morgan said: “Our administration is committed to increasing support for local businesses so we are delighted to be partnering with Goodmoney.”
Councillor Morgan added: “Their new voucher scheme will inject money into independent businesses across the communities and neighbourhoods of Brighton and Hove and help retain that spend in our local economy for longer.”
Research from the New Economics Foundation suggested that money spent with independent local businesses stayed in the local economy for longer, creating more jobs, opportunities and prosperity for local people.
Each year people in Britain spend about £5 billion on gift vouchers and gift cards, with hardly any of this money going to independent local businesses.
Goodmoney gift vouchers can be spent with a wide range of independent local Brighton and Hove businesses from shops, restaurants and cafés to sports clubs, kids clubs, music tutors and local artists.
To see the full list of participating businesses and to purchase gift vouchers visit www.goodmoney.co.uk.
To celebrate the availability of Goodmoney vouchers and its campaign launch, there will be a party open to all Brighton and Hove residents as well as invited special guests on 24 September.
To book a place, visit the Goodmoney website.