France/ In Clisson, citizens unite to support local economic development

Published on 28/02/2024 | La rédaction


La cigale Étincelle, in Clisson, is a group of citizens ready to invest in local projects that are virtuous for today's economy. The group, created in early January, is available to receive project leaders.

What kind of project appeals to La Cicale? Environmentally-friendly food production, such as organic market gardening or weed-free viticulture. A business that creates social links, like a local grocery store or a small-town café. In short, the cicada wants to finance local, economically virtuous entrepreneurship. A Cicada is a group of citizens who each month contribute a sum constituting the Cicada's capital, part of which will be lent, at zero interest, to a project leader.

The members of the Étincelle Cicada, created at the beginning of January, contribute an average of €30 a month. There are twelve members from Clisson, Gorges, Gétigné... Jonathan Eudeline comes from La Haie-Fouassière and runs Silver Anana, a service offering activities for retired people. To set up this activity, he had asked for a loan from a local cicada and, attracted by the way it worked, wanted to join one. I heard that a cicada was being set up in Clisson, so I came along.

Judith Pouzin, from Gétigné, met the president of the Pays de la Loire cicadas in Sarthe. Seduced by the concept, I wanted to join the one in Clisson, which is a member of 1,000 cafés, a program that helps develop multi-service cafés in villages where these service and meeting places are disappearing.

"We help in the creation of the project".

What all Étincelle cigaliers have in common is their desire to support projects that make sense. Projects don't just earn a salary, they build a way of linking activity with environmental protection or solidarity, or the development of a non-existent activity. The social impact is positive.

We also follow the projects when we support them," recalls Sylvie Teulier, Cigalière étincelle de Clisson. We help them set up their project and, if need be, some of us can lend a hand once it's up and running.

Right now, project leaders can contact Étincelle to discuss a zero-interest loan of between €1,000 and €3,000, which can be added to a loan from another cicada. This is an advantage when applying for a loan from a bank. They'll be more reassured if a cicada is involved in the project," explains Nicole Jolivet.

Meetings take place mainly in Clisson.


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