Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation

 La Fédération canadienne des coopératives de travail

2017 Newsletter
Vol 9, Issue 2



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Month Year Vol 1, Issue 1
 CWCF News

 CWCF Member Survey

We are once again conducting a membership survey.  This gives us a chance to connect directly with you and your co-op and get input as to what your Federation can do for its members. Our member survey is an opportunity for us to better understand the challenges, successes and needs of our members.  To date we have only been able to survey less than half of our members. We would appreciate having your feedback.  Please consider taking some time to connect.
Please email Kaye Grant at and let her know what day/time would work for a phone call, or if you prefer, you can link to the online survey for self-completion here: It's always nice to talk, but your input is valuable and we're flexible if that works better for you.

Member Profiles
Members are invited to submit member profiles or updates to be included in future newsletters.  This is a good way to let other members know more about your co-op as a way to increase engagement and sharing. Send your updates to our Newsletter Editor, Kaye Grant, at
In This Issue
2017 CWCF - CoopZone Conference.
Member Profile: Neechi Foods Co-op Meeting Local Economic Challenges.
Member Profile:Multicultural Health Brokers
Vancouver Food Pedalers Co-op:
Emerging Cooperator Stories
Our Stories:
CWCF Technical Program
Employee ownership may help businesses stay open as Boomers retire.
Investissement Québec participe au financement d'un important projet de la Coopérative forestière
Quand Dame Nature fait des siennes
Inclusion: Theme of International Day of Cooperatives.
Global Survey on Youth Co-operatives.
Enquête en ligne aux coopératives des jeunes.
Être entrepreneur ou salarié, certains choisissent les deux
Cooperation in a Changing World of Work.
Solidarity Rising in Massachusetts:
Toronto protests immigration bans
Co-operative Congress 2017 /...Congrès coopératif 2017.
Parcours COOP
Co-op Development for Poverty Reduction.
Cooperative Management Education
Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy and Co-operatives
Preliminary Call for Participation to the VI International Gathering of "The Workers' Economy
2017 CWCF - CoopZone Conference 
November 2 - 4, 2017 / du 2 au 4 novembre 2017
More information will follow soon, and registration will open in July, 2017.  
Plus de renseignements seront bientôt disponibles, et les inscriptions seront ouvertes en juillet 2017. Nous invitons également les membres de CoopZone.
**Le français suit.**

This year we will start off our Conference with a one-day Worker Co-op Management Intensive and a concurrent CoopZone Developers' Intensive.
November 2, 2017
Business Inn, Ottawa, ON 
The main Conference will run November 3-4, 2017
Four Points by Sheraton Hotel & Conference Centre, Gatineau, QC  
Confirmed speakers so far include:  Senator Lucie Moncion (past President of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada), Esteban Kelly, US FWC Co-Executive Director, Philadelphia, PA), and Russ Christianson, long-time member of CoopZone and CWCF's Worker Co-op Developers' Network.
Note:  Accommodations will be available at the Four Points Sheraton and a nearby hostel.  The two conference sites, although in different provinces, are only 3 kilometres apart; we will organize ground transportation.
**Le français**
Cette année, nous commencerons notre Congrès avec une clinique sur la gestion des coopératives de travail, et en même temps, une clinique sur le développement coopératif avec CoopZone. 
le 2 novembre 2017
Business Inn, Ottawa, ON
  Le Congrès principal se déroulera du 3 au 4 novembre 2017
Four Points by Sheraton Hôtel et Centre de conférences
35, rue Laurier
Gatineau, QC
Les conférenciers confirmés jusqu'à date comprennent:  la Sénatrice Lucie Moncion (ancienne présidente, CMC), Esteban Kelly, Co-Directeur général de la US FWC, et Russ Christianson, membre de longue date de CoopZone.
L'hébergement sera disponible au Four Points Sheraton et une auberge à proximité. Les deux sites du Congrès, bien que dans différentes provinces, ne sont qu'à seulement 3 kilomètres de distance; nous organiserons le transport terrestre.
Member Profile:  Neechi Foods Co-op Meeting Local Economic Challenges
By Kaye Grant, Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation
Neechi, an aboriginal worker co-operative located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, launched 27 years ago as a food store in an economically depressed and predominantly aboriginal area in Winnipeg.  Since then it has demonstrated persistence and commitment, as it developed the co-op in response to an economic development need within the aboriginal community. The co-op has since expanded to a new location "Neechi Commons" which now includes a restaurant (BisonBerry Restaurant) and aboriginal arts store and gallery, Neechi Niche.
Neechi's success to date shows that co-ops can create economic opportunities amidst tough social circumstances. They are located in one of the most economically depressed neighbourhoods in Canada, but are the largest employer of indigenous people in Manitoba in retail/wholesale with over 45 staff. Most employees live in the local area. Staff gain employment skills, job experience, and through the worker co-op model, the opportunity to become a business owner, which for most would not otherwise be available.
Neechi has also become an important sales outlet for indigenous artists, most whom live within a 14 block radius of the store.  Artists are able to focus on creating while the store does the sales and marketing.  In addition, the store hosts book launches and art exhibits as a public service.  The restaurant promotes indigenous foods and serves as a meeting place for various groups, including young indigenous social activists.
Neechi has added a meat specialty veteran to its staff who has been able to source local quality meats at a much lower cost, enabling Neechi to offer better meat prices to its customers.  Recently Neechi was accepted into Nutrition North Canada, which is a Canadian federal food subsidy program based on freight costs that is intended to provide residents of remote northern communities with improved access to nutritious foods.  This has enabled Neechi to expand its sales to northern communities and has contributed to strong overall sales growth .  In the case of meats, produce, dairy and other nutritious foods, Neechi's northern customers are able to order directly from Neechi at Winnipeg prices plus a small charge for airport deliveries. Orders are delivered the next day.
This success has come with multiple challenges which Neechi is still struggling with.The initial construction phase of the new location, a green building, resulted in much higher construction costs than anticipated, which have maximized their borrowing capacity. This has required more innovation in their approaches for operational funding.  Although sales continue to grow and breaking even is within sight, they are still operating in a deficit situation. Currently they are exploring a number of options that could enable them to reduce this debt.
Another significant challenge is much higher than anticipated security costs, a response to drug dealing associated with nearby hotels and pharmacies and to routine shoplifting activities. Neechi has also had to contend with intensified competition from large chain stores in Winnipeg.
In the face of these many issues, Neechi is a shining example of an indigenous approach to successfully meeting local economic challenges.

Funds are being sought for the charitable activities in which Neechi is engaged, through the Vancity Community Foundation.  To make a donation, go to:
Member Profile: Multicultural Health Brokers 
by Yvonne Chiu, Co-Executive Director
The MCHB Co-op has entered its 19th year as a workers' co-operative.  We have grown from 12 members in 1998 when we registered with the Alberta Government as a Workers' Co-op to now 47 members and a total of 80 workers. 
We work within 25 communities of different ethno-cultural and linguistic backgrounds, serving around 2,500 families each year, roughly 15,000 individuals holistically, covering all age groups from birth (through our maternal infant health outreach program) to "golden years" (through our outreach to the most isolated seniors within our community). 
Our commitment, through cultural brokering practice, to nurture relationship between immigrant and refugee families with the key systems are still the pivot of our work.  We support capacity development of both families within our communities as well as service providers and policy makers within the key systems of health, education and child & family services.
Our greatest successes in the past two years include the collaborative model of culturally responsive child intervention that we have co-created with Edmonton and Area Child & Family Services. This model of practice with a Liaison Broker on-site at Child Intervention offices to help divert non-child intervention cases out of further child welfare involvement, as well as building the cultural competence of Child & Family Services, has been pursued in Calgary as well. In Edmonton, the model involved the holistic family support of 50 Multicultural Health Brokers to over 400 families to address multiple factors (poverty, family violence, mental health issues) that have rendered them vulnerable for child intervention involvement. A team of researchers from different universities within Canada (University of Alberta, Dalhousie University and Ryerson University) are hoping to conduct research on this model of cultural responsive practice.
Another area of success is the collaborative work with Edmonton Public Schools in incorporating culturally relevant screening of pre-kindergarten children for early learning programs and intercultural early learning practice into the region-wide development of pre-kindergarten programs in Edmonton.  This involves the training and engagement of 30 Brokers of over 15 different linguistic and cultural backgrounds to support the annual screening and the implementation of intercultural early learning in a cluster of schools.

Vancouver Food Pedalers Co-op: Membership Opportunity

Change is afoot at the Food Pedalers in Vancouver! See below!
Are you looking for an innovative business that shares your passion for environmental and sustainable practices? Do you want to grow nutritious food in the city? Are you prepared for the unique challenges this entails? Does the co-op business model interest you? If so, you might be exactly who The Vancouver Food Pedalers Co-op is looking for to take our thriving business forward!
The Food Pedalers Co-op was incorporated in February 2013, evolving out of a sole proprietorship founded by Chris Thoreau in 2009. Based in East Vancouver, The Food Pedalers is one of Vancouver's longest standing urban farms, producing a variety of soil-grown microgreens and wheatgrass and delivering them to restaurants, grocers, and farmers markets by bicycle.

This year-round operation employs a unique production system, utilizing a 40' shipping container modified into a greenhouse. We harvest crops twice weekly, ensuring a constant supply of fresh organic microgreens for our customers. The Co-op has three owner-members and three part-time employees who carry out all of the farm's operations and administration.

Over nine years of development and evolution The Food Pedalers has become an established and recognized brand in the local market and beyond:
  • Production: We have a well-developed production system allowing for year-round growing of microgreens and wheatgrass
  • Market Tenure: We are returning vendors at Trout Lake and Nat Bailey Winter Market, Vancouver's two most popular farmers markets, gaining exposure to thousands of weekly shoppers.
  • Social Media Presence: The co-op has established active networks on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, as well as a modern website.
  • Solid Customer Base: We service restaurants, grocers, and private customers, many of whom have been loyal customers since our conception.
  • Benefits Package: Members enjoy an extended medical benefits and insurance package provided by The Cooperators.
With each of the existing members taking up new opportunities in the summer, we are seeking a minimum of three new individuals to purchase shares in the co-op and take over ownership of the business.

This co-op represents an ideal business opportunity for an ambitious group of individuals with a broad range of skills and experience and a strong desire to build upon our success within the dynamic field of urban, sustainable agriculture.
If you are interested please email, telling us a little about your background and experience and why this opportunity appeals to you.

Emerging Cooperator Stories 
***Le français suite***

We are encouraging young people (under 35) who are involved in the Worker Co-operative sector to share their story.  
In the spirit of Canada's 150th, we're asking you - co-operators throughout Canada - to tell us your co-op story in 150 words!
        • How did you get into co-ops?  
        • What do co-ops mean to you? 
        • What is innovative about your co-op?
You can share your 150-word co-op post over Instagram or Facebook with an image of your choosing using the hashtag #coops150. We also ask that stories from Worker Co-operators also use the hashtag #cwcf150 and if possible email your post to Kaye at  so that we know this is a Worker Co-op story.  We will share your post on CWCF's  Facebook and  Twitter feeds and in our newsletter.

The most popular 150-word submissions will be showcased in Ottawa, in June and in November, as part of official gatherings of  Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada .  As many as 150 co-operative stories from across Canada will also be published as a journal and submitted to Library and Archives Canada. 

***Le français***

Nous encourageons les jeunes (moins de 35 ans) qui participent au secteur coopératif des travailleurs à partager leur histoire.

 l'esprit du 150e, nous demandons aux coopérateurs canadiens de décrire leur vécu coopératif en 150 mots.
  • Comment êtes-vous venus à vous intéresser au modèle coopératif?
  • Que représente une coopérative pour vous?
  • Qu'est-ce qui distingue votre coopérative?
Utilisez le mot-clic #coop150 pour nous transmettre sur Instagram ou Facebook votre récit coopératif de 150 mots ou moins accompagné de l'image de votre choix. 
Nous demandons également que les histoires des coopératives de travail utilisent le hashtag # cwcf150 et, si possible, envoyez un courriel à Kaye à afin que nous sachions qu'il s'agit d'une histoire de coopérative de travail. Nous partagerons votre message sur les médias sociaux de la FCCT:  la page  Facebook et  Twitter et dans notre bulletin.
Les soumissions les plus populaires seront présentées à Ottawa lors des rencontres officielles de Coopératives et mutuelles Canada tenues en juin ainsi qu'en novembre. Cent cinquante récits de partout au pays seront sélectionnés et publiés sous forme de recueil, lequel sera soumis par dépôt légal à Bibliothèque et Archives Canada.

Our Stories: Here are some of our stories posted so far
Here's my co-op story. I  got involved in co-ops at age 28 after doing independent research in law school on employee ownership/ co-operative legislation. I work for co-operatives: Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation: , and CoopZone Co-operative Developers' Network:  I'm a Director of The Co-opera tors: I live at Prairie Sky co-housing co-op. I belong to a car-sharing co-op to lessen my environmental footprint. I patronize and participate in many co-ops: Calgary Co-op, MEC, Just Us!, Camino chocolates, Left-Hand Media Co-op, Connect First Credit Union, a babysitting co-op (previously), etc.

T o me, co-ops are about community, sustainability, helping meet each other's needs, making the world a better place, and bringing hope. They are especially powerful for groups of people whose needs are not being met; as schools of democracy, they help bring power to the powerless.   To me co-ops represent love, lived in the economy.
A video that our family made: "(Our) Song is About Co-operation": 
Hazel Corcoran, CWCF 

About a year ago, when I was still a substitute teacher, a co-worker asked me what I wanted in my teaching career. "Stability," I answered. "And passion." Well, stability isn't a guarantee when you open an ESL school, but we're getting there! As for passion, I am still doing what I love, but I'm now part of a company that respects my ideas about the best way to do it - best for the business, and best for our students and staff. We are in control of our own destiny! 

What I love most about co-ops is the revolutionary idea that business exists to serve the needs of people and of society. Making money is part of that, but it is not the end goal. If I'm going to spend 35+ years of my life working, taking good care of myself and others seems like a good reason to do it! 

Patti, Real English Victoria
CWCF Technical Program 
The CWCF provides small grants to co-op members of CWCF to hire professional help (developers and lawyers who are members of CoopZone, and potentially others, if necessary) to deal with challenging issues they are facing.  CWCF can also help groups identify other sources of start-up and development grants.  In addition, CWCF staff can directly provide technical assistance.  Information on CWCF's Technical Assistance Program is available  here.  You can download the application form   here.

Employee ownership may help businesses stay open as Boomers retire
February 17, 2017 

Working at a pizza shop isn't usually a career move.

But for several workers at a San Jose pizzeria, what started as a temporary gig, a first-time job, or a side-hustle might soon turn into one of the biggest investments of their lives.

A Slice of New York, an authentic New York-style pizzeria with two locations in the South Bay, is well on its way to becoming one of the first small businesses in Santa Clara County to transition from a traditional ownership model to an employee-owned business that will give workers an opportunity to become equal partners in the company. Read the full article here

Investissement Québec participe au financement d'un important projet de la Coopérative forestière La Nord-Côtière

LES BERGERONNES, QC , le 13 févr. 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - Investissement Québec annonce qu'elle a accordé un prêt de 400 000 $ à la Coopérative forestière La Nord-Côtière. Ce financement lui permettra notamment de se doter de nouvelles installations qui serviront à l'entretien de ses équipements, qu'elle effectue elle-même en grande partie.     Lire plus ici.
Pluie, neige, verglas, grésil, brume, gadoue, le travail sylvicole fait probablement partie des métiers les plus tributaires de la température. Ces travailleurs ne savent jamais ce qui les attend dans le bois où il peut tomber de tout, sur tous les temps, alors qu'il fait un soleil radieux à la maison.

Vincent Breton
Il ne semble pas y avoir de secteurs géographiques plus à risque que d'autres, même si les écarts de température paraissent plus exacerbés dans les régions nordiques. CLAUDE DUPUIS, directeur général Groupe Forestra Coopérative Forestière, a travaillé durant 25 ans dans le secteur de La Tuque avant de se déplacer du côté du Saguenay. Des histoires de changements de climat soudain, il en a vu une et une autre, que ce soit à son ancien lieu de travail ou à Laterrière. Lire plus ici.

Inclusion: Theme of International Day of Cooperatives

Cooperators around the world will celebrate on 1 July 2017 the United Nations International Day of Cooperatives under the theme INCLUSION. Selected by the Committee for the Promotion and Advancement of Cooperatives (COPAC), inclusion not only captures the people-focused nature of cooperative enterprises, but also echoes the cooperative principles of voluntary and open membership, democratic member control, and member economic participation. Click here for more.

Global Survey on Youth Co-operative Entrepreneurship  
As part of the campaign WE OWN IT! The future of work is ours, CICOPA has launched an online survey. The information collected will feed into a global study on trends among young people in establishing and being part of worker cooperatives, social cooperatives, producers'/freelancers' cooperatives as well as new emerging forms. 
The purpose of the study is to inform and raise awareness about the state of the art of youth cooperative entrepreneurship at the worldwide level.

The deadline for answering is Friday 26 May and the results of the survey will be published by the end of the year. The survey is available in   English here.
Who does the survey target? 

We are asking youth cooperatives (worker cooperatives, social cooperatives, producers'/freelancers' cooperatives), and cooperatives where the majority of members and non-member employees are aged 18-35, to share information with us through this survey.  

Enquête en ligne aux coopératives des jeunes  
D ans le cadre de la campagne WE OWN IT ! The future of work is ours, CICOPA lance aujourd'hui une enquête en ligne. Les informations récoltées serviront de base à une étude mondiale sur les tendances parmi les jeunes en matière d'établissement et de participation aux coopératives de travail associé, coopératives sociales, et coopératives de producteurs/d'indépendants, y compris sous de nouvelles formes émergentes. Le but de l'étude est d'informer et sensibiliser le public sur l'état de l'art de l'entrepreneuriat coopératif des jeunes au niveau mondial.

La date limite pour répondre est le vendredi 26 mai et les résultats de l'enquête seront publiés d'ici la fin de l'année. L'enquete est disponible en  français ici

Qui est-il la cible de l'enquête ?

Nous demandons aux coopératives de jeunes (coopératives de travail associé, coopératives sociales, et coopératives de producteurs/d'indépendants), où la majorité des membres et des travailleurs non-membres sont âgés de 18 à 35 ans, de partager des informations avec nous à travers de cette enquête.

Être entrepreneur ou salarié, certains choisissent les deux

Pour lancer leur activité tout en s'assurant les droits d'un salarié, près de 10 000 indépendants se tournent vers les coopératives d'activité et d'emploi (CAE), des structures en plein essor qui permettent aussi de rompre l'isolement. Les coopérateurs se dotent collectivement de droits auxquels ils n'auraient pas accès s'ils étaient micro ou autoentrepreneurs : droit du travail, protection sociale, formation continue, outils financiers, mécanismes de solidarité, opportunités d'affaires. Lire plus ici.

Cooperation in a Changing World of Work
The world of work is undergoing major changes. In order to understand and to respond effectively to these new challenges, the International Labour Organization has launched a "Future of Work initiative" to advance its mandate for social justice.  

This note looks at the ways in which cooperatives respond to technological, demographic, economic and environmental changes that are taking place within the world of work. It then examines the key issues as well as the challenges and opportunities that need to be taken into account in future debates.   Download the report here.

Solidarity Rising in Massachusetts: How Solidarity Economy Movement is Emerging in Lower Income Communities of Color 
The report, commissioned by the Solidarity Economy Initiative , examines eight cases across lower-income communities of colour in Massachusetts from Worcester and Springfield to Lynn and Boston. Communities are organizing to resist and reform the current system while building alternatives that go beyond capitalism. They are incubating worker-owned coops, community land trusts, and community-controlled capital. They are modeling an economy and democratic governance based on collective care and putting people and planet over profit. Communities are dreaming big, of building regional ecosystems that can scale up transformative impacts.  Download the report here.

Toronto protests immigration bans: On Unions, Co-ops, Islamo- and other phobias 
Historically the target of much political phobia from some quarters, unions are in fact forces for equality because they ensure there can be at least some justice in the relationship between capital and labour. And co-ops are also forces for good by ensuring  that there can be some balance in the relations between workers/producers and their companies  (in a worker coop) or between buyers and their suppliers (in a consumer co-op). Non-profit TorontotheBetter is a programme of a diverse worker co-op, Libra  Knowledge and Information Services. Since we started up in 2004 we have probably numbered among our members atheists, Muslems, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and Christians. Why probably? At Libra/TorontotheBetter we don't ask and usually don't know. Read more here.

Co-operative Congress 2017 / Congrès coopératif 2017.
***Le français suite***

Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada is delighted to host co-operators from across the country in Ottawa for the  Annual CMC Co-operative Congress.  

 takes place June 20 - 22 at the Delta Hotel and early bird registration begins on April 3.
This year's welcome reception, the evening of June 20th, will be an outdoor block party on one of Canada's most famous pedestrian spaces, the Sparks Street mall. The event will have street food and entertainment within steps of the Parliament.  

A key session during this year's Congress will be focusing on how the co-operative model can deliver economic growth by solving challenges together with the Federal Government. This discussion will contribute to a national strategy on co-operative development that identifies emerging opportunities and ways of accelerating their impact socially and economically.   Click here to find out more.  

***Le français***

Coopératives et mutuelles Canada a le plaisir d'accueillir nos délégués et participants à Ottawa pour le Congrès coopératif 2017.

Le congrès se tiendra du 20 au 22 juin prochains à l'Hôtel Delta d'Ottawa; la période d'inscription hâtive commencera dès le 3 avril.
La réception d'accueil, qui aura lieu dans la soirée du 20 juin, prendra cette année la forme d'une fête en plein air dans l'un des espaces piétonniers les plus célèbres du Canada, le mail de la rue Sparks. L'événement se tiendra donc à quelques pas seulement du Parlement! Cuisine de rue et animation comprises.

L'une des séances phares cette année examinera comment le modèle coopératif peut favoriser la croissance économique en relevant, de concert avec le gouvernement fédéral, nos défis communs. Cette discussion alimentera une stratégie nationale sur le développement coopératif qui viendra souligner quelles occasions se profilent à l'horizon et comment accélérer leurs retombées socioéconomiques.  Cliquez ici pour plus d'informations.

7e cohorte du Parcours COOP :  Début: 3 Mai 2017
Le Réseau de la coopération du travail du Québec (Réseau COOP) est fier d'annoncer le début officiel de la période d'inscription de la 7e cohorte du Parcours COOP.

Le Parcours COOP est un programme complet de formation et d'accompagnement dédié aux entrepreneurs visant la réalisation d'un plan d'affaires pour leur entreprise collective. Le Parcours COOP permet d'accélérer le démarrage et offre un accès facilité au financement. Au cours de cette formation de 14 semaines (à raison de 3 heures par semaine), les participants développent un plan d'affaires d'une grande qualité leur permettant d'aller chercher le financement nécessaire pour lancer leur entreprise COOP. Au-delà de la rédaction d'un plan d'affaires, ils développent leurs compétences entrepreneuriales au sein d'une communauté de pratique et apprennent à maitriser la gestion d'une coopérative grâce aux formations abordant une variété de thèmes : gestion collective, marketing et comptabilité. Lire plus ici 
Co-op Development for Poverty Reduction
June 19 - 23
Co-op Development for Poverty Reduction
Instructor: Eric Tusz-King, CoopZone
This course offers an overview of co-operative enterprises and co-operative development as an effective approach to poverty reduction. Participants will learn about the co-operative movement, its history in Canada and internationally, the values and principles of co-operatives, and their contribution to addressing social, environmental, and economic challenges. The course includes skill building in leadership development. Instruction is provided by CoopZone,  Canada's leading co-op development training organization, and sponsored in part by The Co-operators. Residence accommodation is available for out-of-town participants.

Course information and registration details are available on our website.

Cooperative Management Education 
Co-operative Management Education at St. Mary's University, offers rigorous and dynamic programs for co-operative management professionals. The programs cultivate a deep understanding of co-operatives, credit unions, and mutuals, within a globalized, online curriculum.
Program options include:
  • Master of Management, Co-operatives and Credit Unions (3 years)
  • Graduate Diploma in Co-operative Management (20 months)
  • Enhancing Business Performance (3 days)
  • Manchester, UK (May 17-19, 2017)
  • Vancouver, British Columbia (November 1-3, 2017)
  • Canada Development Education Program (Canada DE) Halifax, Nova Scotia (June 4-10, 2017)
       Co-op Tours in Italy or Spain
       Co-op Tour in Croatia (July 2017)
Who can you think of that might be interested in either the Master's Diploma or even their shorter executive education programs?  Please feel free to promote this learning opportunity within your networks or send your suggestions to Erin Hancock at
Certificate in Co-operative Management
This is a new online 10-month program being offered by Co-operative Management Education, Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary's University (Halifax, NS).
It is comprised of a set of online and part-time courses designed to be completed in 10 months. These courses are designed to enhance practical knowledge of the relevance and impact of the co-operative business model. In addition to joining a fabulous international network of co-operators, students will acquire an expanded toolbox of co-operative specific management tools and best practices related to strategy, financial sustainability, and innovation.

Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy and Co-operatives 
Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy and Co-operatives at the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives (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 nine 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

Preliminary Call for Participation to the VI International Gathering of "The Workers' Economy"
Buenos Aires/Pigüé, Argentina
August 30 to September 2, 2017

The VI International Gathering of "The Workers' Economy" will take place in Argentina between August 30 and September 2, 2017. An opening event will be held at the worker-recuperated Hotel BAUEN in the city of Buenos Aires, and the rest of the gathering will continue at the facilities of the Textil Pigüé Cooperative, a worker-recuperated factory in the interior of the province of Buenos Aires. We invite the participation of all workers from recuperated and self-managed enterprises, cooperatives and social and popular economy organizations, as well as trade unions and academics interested in and committed to self-management practices and the project of a new workers' economy. 

This new, sixth edition of the International Gathering of "The Workers' Economy" will take place ten years after the first edition was organized by the Programa Facultad Abierta (Open University Program) of the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters of the University of Buenos Aires in July 2007. Subsequent editions have taken place in Buenos Aires (2009), Mexico (2011), Brazil (Joao Pessoa, 2013) and Venezuela (Punto Fijo, 2015). Beginning in 2014, regional gatherings have also been taking place in South America, Europe, and the Mediterranean, and North and Central America, the last of which were held in October and November 2016 with the participation of representatives from 30 countries.

This new International Gathering will be held at a particular juncture when a workers' economy based on self-management appears more and more as an alternative to savage capitalism. This is particularly so given that our contemporary capitalist order increasingly condemns the majority of the world's working people to exploitation, precariousness, and unemployment, while unleashing wars, discrimination, and destruction throughout the planet. In Argentina, where the sixth edition of the gathering of "The Workers' Economy" will take place, one of the world's most extensive experience of self-management and workers' recuperations of shops and factories faces a new neoliberal offensive. From there, at this critical moment, we invite you to participate in this new edition of the International Gathering of "The Workers' Economy," which intends to bring together and expand on the numerous debates, discussions, and shared experiences of the three most recent regional gatherings and earlier International Gatherings, while also aiming to strengthen the organization of our growing world network.

In addition to the sessions that will begin on August 30, the VI International Gathering's local organizing committee is planning activities and visits to social organizations and worker-recuperated companies in Buenos Aires one week prior to the gathering. The organizing committee will also guarantee transportation logistics for all participants in the city of Buenos Aires and the city of Pigüé, where most of the gathering will take place and which was already the site of the First South American Regional Meeting of "The Workers' Economy" in October 2014. 

Shortly, we will be releasing a full schedule of the VI International Gathering's themes and discussion topics, the deadlines for presentation and panel proposals, and other organizational details.
For more information, we invite you to go to:, or contact and
~ The Organizing Committee of the VI International Gathering of  "The Workers' Economy"  Copyright © 2017 University of Toronto, All rights reserved. 

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