Durability of co-ops on display at CCCU

Co-operatives are a surprisingly durable way to conduct business

Vanessa Hammond promoted co-op culture at the Coastal Community Credit Union Thursday.

Vanessa Hammond promoted co-op culture at the Coastal Community Credit Union Thursday.

There’s something about working with co-ops that Vanessa Hammond really likes.

Maybe, said the Parksville resident Tuesday, it’s because people involved with co-ops tend to … co-operate.

That, she added, helps co-ops remain one of the most stable forms of business going, although they often tend to fly under the media radar in the face of  enterprises that use more aggressive business practices.

“Co-ops, when they are set up properly, are more durable than any other type of business,” she said. “After five years, nine out  of 10 co-ops will still be alive, compared to six out of 10 other businesses.”

Hammond, who works part-time for the Canadian Co-op Association, made the comments as she staffed a display at the Coastal Community Credit Union Thursday to mark International Co-op week, October 16 to 22.

The key to their success, she said, besides the co-operative aspect, involves setting out a shared set of values between the people in the group — a very different modus operandi from most other business relationships.

“A co-op is anything that follows the seven international co-op principles,” she said. “It’s a form of incorporation equivalent to foundations and so on.

“It’s a formal arrangement. The difference is you start with shared values. People get together and decide they want to do something for themselves or the community.”

The reason a co-op is set up, she added, can be as  varied as art sales to motorcycle maintenance.

“I joined my first co-op at age 13 so I could sell eggs,” she said.

“One co-op in Victoria is run by a group of guys with motorbikes whose wives got tired of them always fixing their motorcycles in their living rooms, so they made a co-op motorcycle shop.”

Although her promotion of the co-op concept was fairly low-key this year, Hammond said she plans to do something a little more in the public eye in 2012, which has been named the International Year of the Co-Op.

“What we are doing this year is thinking about how we can strengthen the sector for next year and how we can make more people aware of how co-ops can help create sustainable communities,” she said.







Just Posted

The Parksville Civic and Technology Centre at 100 Jensen Ave. (PQB News file photo)
Parksville 2020 annual report now ready for public feedback

Documents can be viewed online; comments or questions to be submitted before noon on July 5, 2021

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased in Parksville

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Most Read