Co-operators and development practitioners came together in a #coops4dev session to stress the importance of partnerships with co-operatives for international development.
The event featured high-level representatives of the European Union, International Labor Organization (ILO), CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE), International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and United Cities of Local Authorities (UCLG).
The session, which attracted over 200 participants, highlighted the importance of alternative economic models in development, which can prioritise human and economic growth in their approach towards development.
Co-operatives were described as leading development actor to partner with due to their values and people-centred approach.
After the co-operative decade
Representatives from the Alliance’s Global Board, Regional Boards, Sectoral Organisations Boards and Thematic Committees participated in the first joint board meeting to discuss the action plan for the Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade.
The meeting is the first one bringing together the various organisations and committee within the Alliance. Participants begun a conversation intended to lead to an integrated, multi-year planning for all structures of the Alliance. Members reviewed a policy guide that results from a survey of the cooperative organisations in almost 30 countries and their policy priorities.
The Blueprint, adopted in 2013, is the Alliance’s global strategy to grow the co-operative movement, focusing on five priority areas: Participation, Sustainability, Identity, Legal Frameworks and Capital.
Consumer co-op election
The Alliance’s sectoral organisation, Consumer Co-operatives Worldwide (CCW), held its General Assembly which saw Petar Stefanov, president of CCU, Bulgaria, re-elected resident of the organisation. Eiichi Honda, president of JCCU in Japan, was elected vice-president.
Members pledged active co-operation in the field of coop-to-coop trade, youth policy, intersectoral collaboration and in pooling together co-operative academic resources in drafting the long-term strategy for the development of consumer co-operatives globally: vision 2030 and beyond.
Health co-ops meet
On World Diabetes Day, representatives from health co-operatives from around the world met in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to discuss the sector’s vision for the future.
The General Assembly of the International Health Co-operative Organisation has representatives of health co-ops from 14 countries, who talked about their response to the challenges of an ageing population and the widening gap between rich and poor. A key focus is the prevention of chronic diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension, which reduces the need for secondary care.
Secretary José Perez, who presented the accounts and activities carried out during the past year, said IHCO was involved in the B20 Health Conference in May in Berlin. As a result, a policy paper on health sent to Prime Ministers of the G20 countries included a paragraph on the role of health co-operatives in providing services.
“It’s important that health co-ops are on the agenda of governments because they are part of the solutions to the challenges that we will face in the future to maintain the national health systems,” he said.