By Oscar Perry Abello, 04.19.17, Fast Company

There are more places for your checking and savings than just the big banks: Consider a credit union or a community development financial institutions.

On was April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his Mountaintop Speech, in which he famously foretold he had seen the promised land but “might not get there with you.”

In a less-famous part of that same speech, he called upon black communities and their allies to move their money to black-owned banks and even black-owned insurance companies. The reason he said was, “Now these are some practical things that we can do. We begin the process of building a greater economic base.”

He was assassinated the next day. But the work of building an economic base, within black communities, Latino communities, low-income communities, that work continued. In these communities that big banks had long neglected, people of all races formed their own banks and credit unions and shaped them to reflect the values they shared–values like diversity, equity, local ownership, and a sense of economic justice.

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