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This newsletter is a newsletter for and about the cooperative community.  Manitoba Cooperative Association publishes monthly.  If you have any story ideas or something you think the community should know, please feel free to email us at newsletter@manitoba.coop

MANITOBA COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION

CO-OP CONNECTIONS

APRIL 2017 EDITION

Deadline for registration for Manitoba Youth Leadership Retreat approaching

It's almost time for the Co-op Youth Leadership Retreat which will be held this year from May 4 - 7 at the Riding Mountain Conference Centre

This retreat brings youth together from across the province to build the next generation of co-op leaders. Participants are engaged with hands-on leadership activities delivered through a cooperative lens. Youth are challenged and grow through workshops on communication, personal and cooperative values, group diversity, global development, etc. The leadership program also involves past participants as staff and junior leaders who lead all the workshops. In these roles the staff and junior leaders cement their knowledge and understanding of co-ops while becoming passionate about the movement as they return year after year.  Of course, fun activities are mixed in with the more serious ones creating an experience youth won’t soon forget.

If you know any of any high school students please let them know of this exciting opportunity.  There are still spots available.  Participants are sponsored by local co-ops and credit unions. We are still looking for co-ops and credit unions to provide sponsorship, especially for participants from the inner city. Posters and brochures are available at most credit unions and high schools, or you can email youth@manitoba.coop for more information.  Registration deadline for both sponsorships and participants is Wednesday, April 26.

 

MCA accepting awards nominations

Do you know somebody deserving of a distinguished cooperator award, a co-op that's done some great things or a young person who has made significant contributions to cooperatives? 

The Manitoba Cooperative Association (MCA) is pleased to recognize cooperative achievement annually at the Cooperative Awards Banquet. Nominations are invited for the Manitoba Cooperative Awards program to honour individuals and organizations in Manitoba that have made an outstanding contribution to cooperatives and credit unions.  Awards will be presented during National Co-op Week, October 15 - 21 at a banquet attended by cooperative and credit union members, officials and government representatives.   

The deadline for nominations is May 15.  Please visit our website for more information and to access the nomination form.  If you need help or have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

 

Does your co-op need help with its legal obligations?

Did you know that MCA offers co-op development services?  Our co-op developer has  not only helped co-ops get started but also provides advice and support on your legal obligations including how to fill out your annual return.  If you haven't yet completed your annual return, it was due on March 31 and fines are assessed daily for each day thereafter.  

If you need help with that or maybe you're looking at adopting simpler bylaws then the ones you currently have or are just looking to find out whether a co-op is the right model for you, send us a quick email or give us a call at 204-297-8737.

We're here to help!

 

Co-op learning at the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives

The Centre for the Study of Co-operatives is offering a Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy and Co-operatives. This program is through the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy at the University of Saskatchewan.

This program is for people from any educational or professional background:
  • designed for working professionals
  • upgrade your skills, transition to master’s program
  • blended-learning option - in-person and online courses
  • complete the course in 9 months of part-time study
Learning outcomes:
  • articulate the policy conditions that support the development of social enterprises and co-ops
  • evaluate the role of social economy organizations in delivering services
  • compare governance structures in social enterprises, co-operatives, and other organizations
For more information see the overview here and here and view the application here.  

If you have questions about the Certificate, please contact Darcy Overland at 306–966–8502 or email at darcy.overland@usask.ca or you can visit their website.

 

Cooperators welcome co-op friendly bill

On April 7 cooperators welcomed a breakthrough Private Member's Motion adopted in unanimity by the House of Commons on Wednesday. 
 
Motion M-100 tabled by Liberal M.P. Alexandra Mendès (Brossard - St-Lambert) sends a clear message and mandate to the Government of Canada to establish a framework that will promote the recognition and development of co-operatives in Canada. It also asks Government of Canada Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) to establish a national cooperative development strategy.

The Motion reads, "That, in the opinion of the House, the government should recognize the important role co-operatives play in the economy and ensure that they continue to thrive by taking concrete steps such as: (a) developing, in consultation with provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous communities and the co-operative sector, a federal co-operative strategy to promote and support Canada's co-operative sector; and (b) providing periodic progress reports on pre-established goals and targets."

This bill is the platform upon which the government can engage with cooperative and mutual stakeholders. 

 

Federal budget offers hope for affordable housing

Canada’s federal budget was recently presented and co-op members across the country heard wonderful news:

The federal government will be investing $11.2 billion in building and protecting affordable housing.

More good news! A key part of the budget will help protect low-income households faced with expiring subsidies – including people living in housing co-ops. And the federal government has set itself a deadline for solving the subsidy crisis as part of its new National Housing Strategy.
We are making history. Together, we have secured a critical investment that will protect low-income homes and secure a better future for affordable housing in Canada.

Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada) is now requesting your help.  The federal budget does not guarantee how much money will go to co-op housing. We need to ensure that co-ops are not forgotten when the funds are distributed. Your CHF Canada team is working hard to ensure that housing co-ops get what they need from the budget.

Tell your MP it's time for action by taking 60 seconds and sending a message to your MP. Tell them that housing co-ops can help solve Canada’s affordable housing crisis – but first we need funding to end the subsidy crisis and protect our low income households.

(Taken from CHF Canada E-News)

 
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