Co-operators celebrated at the Co-operative Awards

Co-operatives from around the world celebrated co-operation at a Co-operative Awards ceremony last night.

Co-operatives from around the world celebrated co-operation at a Co-operative Awards ceremony last night.

The event, part of Co-operatives United, celebrated three UK co-ops, three young winners of the ICACoopArt awards and the winner of the Rochdale Pionners Award.

Roberto Rodrigues was honoured as the winner of the prestigious Rochdale Pioneers award. The former ICA President and Brazil’s Minister for Agriculture received a huge round of applause as he took to the stage.

The award was presented by the Leader of the Council of Rochdale, Colin Lambert, which Dame Pauline Green said was “fitting” for the event.

Dame Pauline added that Roberto had been a “co-operative leader nearly all his life” and had done a “huge amount for our model and businesses around the world”.

Roberto thanked everyone for his award and said in Portuguese to his fellow Brazilian co-operators, that the award was not for him, but for us. In English he described how co-operation was to his life and said” “I cannot be happy unless my neighbour is happy.”

He added that the next stage for the Co-operative Movement was the Nobel Peace Prize.

Another special set of awards went to a group of highly talented young people who won the ICA Coop’Art prize. The categories were: photography, video and music.

The winners were: Roberto Morban Ramirez from Dominican Republic in Music, Billy Ray Tamio from Phillipines in Photography and Francisca Javiera Badilla Castillo from Chile in Video.

They received over 170 submissions to the competition from 35 countries.

The other awards of the day were the Co-operatives UK Awards for co-ops that were innovative and had made a big impact in the sector.

The winners were:

Co-operative of the Year Award – Midcounties Co-operative

This was for overall excellence in relation to performance on all aspects of running a successful co-operative.

Other nominations: Renewable Energy Co-operative and Benenden Healthcare Society.

Sponsored by by Cobbetts LLP.

The #coops2012 Award – FC United

This was for the co-operative which has actively used a variety of media (radio, press and social media) to promote how their co operative is building a better world through co operation during 2012.

Other nominations were: Shared Interest Society and Broadband for Rural North.

Sponsored by Heart of England Co-operative Society.

Small Co-operative, Big Achiever – Equal Exchange Trading Limited

This was for a small co-operative, with a turnover of up to £5 million that has made a big impact with an innovative project or projects.

Other nominations were: Co-operative Press and Lyvennet Community Pub.

Sponsored by Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society.


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