This week, ICMIF member, The Co-operators announced more than CAD 250,000 worth of funding to 14 community-based organizations across Canada. The funding is provided through The Co-operators Foundation – Community Economic Development (CED) Fund, which supports community enterprises and initiatives that help disadvantaged Canadians move towards self-sufficiency.
“These organizations provide much needed support and resources for marginalized people, improving livelihoods and strengthening the community as a whole,” said Kathy Bardswick, President and CEO of The Co-operators. “Concern for community is a guiding principle of cooperatives and we believe that in sustainable communities, everyone has an opportunity to achieve their potential.”
Street Youth Job Action (SYJA), a social enterprise initiative of Family Services of Greater Vancouver, was one of the recipients of this year’s funding. “We empower homeless and at-risk youths to reach their fullest potential by providing them with pre-employment and skill development,” said Emily Beam, General Manager of Street Youth Job Action. “The Co-operators support assists SYJA to spend more time with each youth, helping them fulfil their personal and career goals, access housing, education and health care, and build positive relationships in the community.”
The Community Economic Development (CED) Fund was established in 1995 to commemorate The Co-operators 50th anniversary and has since disbursed more than 3.4 million CAD to 86 organizations. The CED Fund is part of The Co-operators Foundation, which supports social economy enterprises and other worthy causes throughout Canada.