Eight emerging Canadian co-operatives have received funding to help them expand and meet the needs of their communities.
The grants, which total CAD $100,000 (£49,000), are provided through the Co-operative Development Program, set up by The Co-operators 23 years ago. So far, the programme has given CAD $2.1m (£1.03m) in funding to 155 Canadian co-ops.
The co-ops who have received the latest round of funding are:
Lower North Shore Bioproducts Solidarity Cooperative, Quebec, which develops, harvests, processes and markets raw and prepared products from wild berries.
Funeral Co-operative, Ottawa, which provides a complete range of funeral services.
London Brewing Co-operative, a worker co-operative in the city of London, near Quebec, which makes beer from local, organic ingredients. It the first worker’s co-operative brewery outside of Quebec. Each employee has one vote regardless of the length of employment and overall investment in the brewery.
Aaron Lawrence, president and worker owner, said: “It’s about recognising that beer is an agricultural product, in that the primary ingredients, barley and hops, are grown on farms. Now what if those farms were local farms?
“That’s the mission of the London Brewing Co-operative, to produce unique and truly local beers that celebrate our region and the relationships that make beer possible.”
David Thuss, secretary and worker owner, added: “The grant from the Co-operators will allow us to expand our marketing efforts to educate consumers about the choices they are making when ordering a pint.
“A responsive website, greater social media engagement, and working with local artists on signage for our brewery and delivery vehicles is now possible with the support from the Co-operators.”
Sumac Community Worker Co-operative, Guelph, whose workers own and operate Planet bean Inc, a fair trade and organic coffee roaster and wholesaler. The co-ops, which also received funding from the Co-operators, run three coffee bars in Southern Ontario.
Winnipeg FoodShare Co-op, a community service co-op committed to affordable and healthy food.
Saskatoon CarShare Co-operative, a community-owned and environmentally friendly alternative to individual car ownership in the city of Saskatoon.
110 Arts Cooperative, Vancouver, an interdisciplinary arts space for development of the creative community.
West Kootenay Permaculture Co-op, Winlaw, a not-for-profit co-op building a community food centre in their rural farming region.
“All of these organisations and their members make positive contributions to their communities by bringing co-operative principles to life,” said Kathy Bardswick, president and chief executive of the Co-operators. “We’re pleased to support the growth of organisations like these, which we know can make a great impact with even a modest amount of funding.”
In this article
- Aaron Lawrence
- Co-operative Development Program
- community food centre
- Community Worker Co-operative
- David Thuss
- Funeral Co-operative
- Funeral Services
- Kathy Bardswick
- Saskatoon CarShare Co-operative
- Worker cooperative
- North America
- Top Stories