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International Co-operative Day will have the theme of “Co-operative enterprises achieve sustainable development for all”

International Co-operative Day will have the theme of “Co-operative enterprises achieve sustainable development for all”

The aim of the day is to increase awareness of co-operatives and promote the movement’s successes and ideals of international solidarity, economic efficiency, equality, and world peace. Concern for the community is one of the co-operative movement’s founding values and, as such, the need to sustainably safeguard favourable living conditions for communities underpins all co-operatives’ operations and vision.

OAS Conference Underscores Role of the Cooperative Movement in Fostering Economic Development and Social Inclusion

OAS Conference Underscores Role of the Cooperative Movement in Fostering Economic Development and Social Inclusion

The Conference “Cooperatives in the Americas: Driving Economic Growth with Equity and Inclusion” organized by The Organization of American States (OAS), Cooperatives of the Americas and NCBA from the United States, analyzed the leading role of the cooperative movement in the Hemisphere as a promoter of economic development with social inclusion.

Cooperatives of the Americas is updating and expanding its database

Cooperatives of the Americas is updating and expanding its database

To continue sharing important information regarding the cooperative sector and the social economy, Cooperatives of the Americas (former ICA-Americas) calls the general public to update its database.

OAS Secretary General Says "Democracy in Latin America Is Much Better than Before, but There Are Still Many Challenges to Overcome"

The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), José Miguel Insulza, said on Monday, March 31, 2014 that democracy in Latin America is in a good shape compared with its recent past, but warned that it still suffers from shortcomings and challenges remain, during a keynote address he delivered at the Universidad Central de Chile in Santiago to mark the beginning of the 2014 academic year.

Martin Lowery and Barry Silver Named to Cooperative Hall of Fame

Barry Silver and Martin Lowery will receive the cooperative community’s highest honor, and join a select group of individuals who have been recognized for their dedication to fostering cooperative enterprises worldwide.

150 Cooperative Leaders from Across the Hemisphere Demonstrate Economic and Social Power at OAS Gathering

On Thursday, March 20th more than 150 cooperative leaders from the Caribbean, North, Central, and South America met for a first-of-its-kind event held at the Organization of American States (OAS).

Call for submissions for the Vidanta Foundation Prize 2014

We are pleased to announce the call for submissions for the Vidanta Foundation Prize 2014, which will recognize the work of civil society organizations from Latin America and the Caribbean, Andorra, Spain and Portugal with prizes up to US$100,000 for projects that have successfully contributed to the reduction of poverty and inequality.

Canada’s Co-Op Movement Enters New Era With CMC Launch On April 1

A new era will soon begin for Canada’s co-operative movement with the launch of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC) on April 1. For the first time, co-operative and mutual enterprises in every sector and every region of Canada will be represented by a single national bilingual organization.

New course on “Co-operative Enterprise Law"

The Ruralia Institute of the University of Helsinki is organizing through its Coop Network Studies Program a course on “Co-operative Enterprise Law”. Dates: August 5 to 21, 2014.

Representative of the Network of Parliamentarian who support cooperatives will participate in the Euro-Latin American Parliamentarian Assembly

The Argentinean Senator Luis Rubeo (term of office ended) was invited to attend the VIII Meeting EuroLat – Social Society on 27th March, Athens, Greece. Rubeo will give a presentation on the Network of Parliamentarians who support cooperatives in the Americas, as the Representative Coordinator of the Parlatino at Cooperatives of the Americas (ex ICA-Americas), Region of the International Cooperative Alliance.

Giuliano Poletti, former head of Legacoop new Italian Minister of Labour and Welfare

Italy’s Prime Minister-designate Matteo Renzi, announced the line-up of his cabinet on 21 February. Giuliano Poletti, former head of the cooperative association Legacoop, has been appointed as minister of Labour and Welfare.

Trama, the cooperative of TV channels in Argentina

The cooperatives in Argentina have decided to take a strategic step up in telecommunications, now the change in laws governing such services, rules that the non-profit entities can be therefore providers of radio and television. Over two hundred cooperatives providing public services thus became cable operators.

US government grants funding to help establish more rural co-operatives

There is no doubt that a legal framework which facilitates co-operative growth is largely lacking in most countries. The recent news therefore that the US government has decided to allocate over USD $6m to the Rural Co-operative Development Grant (RCDG) is very welcome.

Coop Obrera distributes eco-bags

According to a new Argentinian law, from 1st January 2014, the sale of non-biodegradable bags will be prohibited.

New initiative in Finland to get young people involved in the co-operative movement

The Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade encourages co-operatives to attract young people into the movement in order to both revitalise it and give it longevity. This summer, Finland’s SOK Group will open its doors to thousands of young people looking for part-time work. More formal traineeships will also be offered to teach the youngsters about the co-operative movement and to allow them to visit several stores. A recruitment drive has already begun and will last until the end of February.

Cooperatives in the Americas: Driving Economic Growth with Equity & Inclusion

The Executive Secretariat for Integral Development (SEDI) of the Organization of the American States (OAS); the National Business Cooperative Association, CLUSA International (NCBA CLUSA); and Co-operatives of the Americas—A Region of the International Co-operative Alliance (known as ICA Americas), are pleased to invite you to attend "Cooperatives in the Americas: Driving Economic Growth with Equity and Inclusion", a cooperative event focused on the robust cooperative movement within the Americas. This event will take place on March 20, 2014 in Washington D.C. at the OAS Hall of the Americas, located on 17th Street and Constitution Ave. NW.

International Women’s Day 2014 Declaration

With the title: “Equality for women: progress for all” the International Co-operative Alliance called cooperators to maintain our steadfast and collective action in consolidating a co-operative movement and a society which is led by men and women, providing recognition and working together for equality, solidarity, democracy and development.

NCBA supports cogresional passage of Farm Bill

Reauthorization measure passes Senate; sent to President with NCBA CLUSA led provision for Interagency Working Group at USDA

Brazil Gearing Up For EXPOCOOP 2014

Co-operative enterprises from around the world will be showcased in Curitiba, Brazil in May when the South American city hosts Expocoop 2014.

A new European project on training tools for health and safety at social services enterprises has started

Organizations from five countries from the European Union (Spain, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Bulgaria) have celebrated the first meeting of a large and ambitious project to develop a group of training tools (with videos and courses), for safety and health in social services enterprises.

Law decree gives Bolivian workers the right to take over bankrupt companies

The President of Bolivia, Evo Morales, approved a law decree that will enable workers to take control of bankrupt or abandoned factories in order to set up social enterprises, including co-operatives.

New ILO report highlights the main advantages of energy co-operatives

A new report published by the International Labour Organization’s Enterprise Department presents a collection of case studies on co-operatives in energy production, distribution and consumption, showing their contribution to the on-going search for ways in which the goal of Sustainable Energy for All.

Call for comments on co-operative principles 3, 5, and 7

We seek your expertise! Under the auspices of the Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade, the Principles Committee is leading the drafting of Guidance Notes – interpretation aids for the Cooperative Principles.

Call For Papers: ICA-CCR international research conference

Co-operative researchers from around the world will gather in Pula, Croatia from June 25-28 for the International Co-operative Alliance’s 2014 research conference.

National Cooperative Bank’s Barry Silver Named to Cooperative Hall of Fame

National Cooperative Bank (NCB), a leading financial institution dedicated to providing banking solutions to cooperatives nationwide, is proud to announce that Barry Silver, an Executive Vice President, is a 2014 inductee to the Cooperative Hall of Fame. Mr. Silver, and three other honorees, will receive the cooperative community’s highest honor, and join a select group of individuals who have been recognized for their dedication to fostering cooperative enterprises worldwide.

Call for papers for a special journal issue on co-operative governance

A special joint issue of the International Journal of Co-operative Management and the Journal of Co-operative Accounting and Reporting. The theme will be “Co-operative governance: A critical approach”.

Co-operative Movement Mourns Passing of Ian Macpherson

Tributes are pouring in from around the world for Ian MacPherson, Canada’s co-operative historian, author, educator and advocate who passed away on November 16.

Top 300 co-operatives are worth over 2 trillion

The world’s top 300 co-operatives have continued to grow, achieving an overall turnover of USD $2,097 billion in 2011. The results of the survey confirm an increase from 2010, when the world’s top 300 co-operatives, distributed in 24 countries, had a turnover of USD $1,975 billion.

Evaluation confirms that co-operatives reduce poverty

Co-operatives in the developing world are improving the livelihoods of their members and Canadian efforts to support those co-operatives are helping them do that.

Quebec Adopts Social Economy Legislation

Quebec’s National Assembly has adopted legislation recognizing the contribution social economy organizations, including co-operatives and mutuals, make to the province’s social and economic development.

FAO strengthens alliance with agricultural and food co-operatives worldwide

15 October 2013, Rome, Italy – FAO and the International Co-operatives Alliance (ICA)begin a new collaboration with the shared conviction that agricultural and food co-operatives must be central to any agricultural and rural development strategy. A Memorandum of Understanding that underlines this idea was signed today at FAO Headquarters by FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva and ICA President Pauline Green.

United Nations’ FAO Reaches Deal Extending Co-operative Model to Africa’s Farmers

ROME—In a landmark decision that may benefit small-time farmers in Africa and beyond, the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization Tuesday reached a deal giving extended support to co-operatives, a growing force in the global economy.

FAO gives agriculture co-ops extended support in the run up to World Food Day

The Memorandum of Understanding signed today between the FAO and the International Co-operative Alliance names ‘unique’ the contribution of agriculture co-operatives. It recognizes agriculture co-operatives as ‘crucial partners in the fight against hunger and poverty’. The memorandum empowers agriculture co-operatives with yet a stronger negotiating position towards state partners NGO’s, and agribusiness. Through its emphasis on knowledge sharing, the memorandum improves co-operatives’ ability to secure access to capital and to develop their enterprises in an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable way.

UN Inter-Agency Task Force on Social and Solidarity Economy Established

The founding meeting of the UN Inter-Agency Task Force on Social and Solidarity Economy took place on 30 September 2013 in Geneva. This is a new inter-agency partnership that aims to assist countries, mobilize political will and enhance momentum towards mainstreaming the issue of SSE in international and national policy frameworks.

VIII Meeting of Parliamentarians who support cooperatives in the Americas

The VIII Parliamentarian Meeting will be held during the celebration of the ICA-Americas Regional Conference in Guarujá, Brazil, on October 10, 2013. In this opportunity Parliamentarians will be encouraged to highlight the importance of the fourth strategic initiative of the ICA Blueprint for a Cooperative Decade “Legal Framework”. It seeks a proper understanding by governments and lawmakers of the economic and social benefits the co-operative model can bring about.

Re-defining the role of Gender Equity to achieve the Challenge 2020

The IX Meeting of Gender Equity will be held on October 8, in the framework of the XVIII ICA-Americas Regional Conference. The Meeting will reunite Gender, Cooperatives and Competitiveness experts to examine the possibilities of providing clear orientation for the years to come so that cooperatives can be acknowledged as the leaders in economic, social and environmental sustainability.

The Politics of the Cooperative Sector in Developing Countries: Insights from Argentina, Brazil and Colombia

The International Labour Organization and the UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service organized a series of think pieces by scholars and practitioners working on a broad range of issues within the field of Social and Solidarity Economy. This paper, written by Andrés Spognardi, focuses almost exclusively on Latin American countries and covers two main topics: the political economy of the cooperative sector, and the institutional and socioeconomic aspects of natural resource management.

Cuba: the first cooperatives in industry and services

124 cooperatives recently became operative in various sectors in Cuba. 25 of them are active in the sectors of construction, transport and waste collection. Until recently, cooperative enterprises were active only in the field of agriculture in Cuba.

2012 Global Credit Union Statistical Report Now Available

World Council of Credit Unions has released its 2012 Statistical Report, which provides the best available membership and financial data from credit unions and financial cooperatives worldwide. This year’s report includes information from 55,952 credit unions serving more than 200 million members in 101 countries.

New legislation helps drive the cooperative movement in the US

A champion for worker cooperatives, Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA), has again shown his support for the cooperative model by introducing the ’Creating Jobs Through Cooperatives’ Act in the US House of Representatives.

Dame Pauline Green: “Momentum is with us”

In the final address to Co-operative Congress 2013, the President of the International Co-operative Alliance spoke of the impact of the International Year of Co-operatives and the ICA’s vision for the future.

Enter the dotCoop Global Awards by July 31

The 2013 dotCoop Global Awards for Cooperative Excellence are now accepting entries through 31 July 2013. The awards will be presented in Cape Town, South Africa in November 2013.

Co-op Hot Shots competition

The Singapore National Co-operative Federation has launched its much awaited Photography Competition Co-op Hot Shots.

NCBA CLUSA Supports Youth Cooperative Movement Before Puerto Rican House of Representatives

In a meeting with the Commission on Cooperatives and Non-profit Organizations in San Juan, NCBA CLUSA Chief Operating Officer, Amy Coughenour Betancourt, supported a newly formed youth cooperative—Coopare—focused on advancing youth development and leadership among Puerto Rican youth. The meeting with the Commission was intended to promote the mission of Coopare and seek resources and support.

Important: ICA Global Conference and General Assembly 2013 Bursaries

Should you need financial assistance in order to attend the conference to be held from November 1 to 5 in Cape Town, there are a limited number of bursaries available for CHF 2,500 each. The funds will first be applied to the registration fee of the winners and then the remaining amount distributed to the winner to use towards their airfare, transport and hotel costs.

Canada: Bill Dobson new CCA president

Alberta farmer Bill Dobson, a director of UFA Co-operative Ltd., is the new president of CCA. Terry Otto (The Co-operators) is vice-president, while Dusty MacDonald (Federated Co-operatives Ltd.) and Sandy Wallace (Credit Union Central of Manitoba) are also on the executive committee.

Italian Prime Minister: "cooperatives are to be replicated and supported"

The Alliance of Italian Cooperatives (comprising the three Italian cooperative confederations namely AGCI, Confcooperative and Legacoop) celebrated the National Assembly of Italian cooperatives today in Rome. The event was aimed at strengthening the unity of the Italian cooperative movement and explaining how cooperatives contribute to economic recovery and to more equitable development.

United States: Cooperative Development Bill was introduced in the House of Representatives

New legislation focuses on job creation by promoting cooperative development

Lessons for Building a Co-operative Movement

Pm Press has released a second edition of John Curl’s 550 page history of “cooperation, cooperative movements, and communalism in America,” In this interview GEO’s Michael Johnson talks with John about what is new in the second edition, the surprisingly long history of co-operatives here in the US, and what his history has to tell us about building a 21st century movement for a co-operative/solidarity economy.

Call for proposals for Portfolio of Experiences on Student Participation and Leadership

How can we strengthen student participation and leadership in schools and other educational centers? What conditions are needed to make that participation a reality? What are the main challenges? These are some of the questions that arise from a discussion about the capacity of education to promote practical learning on democratic citizenship. Given the relevance that the topic has to the educational agenda, specifically taking into account the impact that education for democratic citizenship has in the preparation of children and youth for life in a democracy, the Inter-American Program on Education for Democratic Values and Practices proposes to develop a virtual portfolio of experiences that collects and publish policies, programs and initiatives of preschool, primary and secondary school levels by government institutions, non-governmental organizations, and educational institutions (both public and private).

Cooperatives today: Challenges and opportunities

A recent seminar organized by the ILO’s Bureau for Workers’ Activities and the ILO’s Cooperative Branch brought together researchers and practitioners from around the world to talk about some of the issues and experiences that cooperatives are facing today.

As much of western Europe still grapples with austerity and weak economic growth, the co-operative economy is proving remarkably resilient sparking a revival of employee owned businesses.

As much of western Europe still grapples with austerity and weak economic growth, the co-operative economy is proving remarkably resilient sparking a revival of employee owned businesses. (Reuters)

Global Co-operative Image Your views count

We’d like your help in realising the ICA’s Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade by participating in a short survey on key messages and a visual identity for the global co-operative movement. The ICA Board has decided that there was such strong acceptance of the logo for the International Year of Co-operatives that we should develop a subsequent image for co-operatives around the world to use at least through the Co-operative Decade.

XVIII ICA Americas Regional Conference
Cooperative Decade

Our members anniversary

ICA-Americas sends its warmest greeting to its member organizations who are celebrating their anniversaries in April 2014.

Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples de Puerto Rico (CSMPR) was founded on 23 April 1963 and thus, it is celebrating its 51 anniversary.

Sefired Red de Soluciones (SEFIRED) was founded on 16 April 2009 and thus, it is celebrating its 5 anniversary.

Successful cooperative stories

Cooperativa Los Pinos - ACOPALP (El Salvador)

An illustrative example of how a cooperative initially dedicated to coffee production can become a true agent of local development, building houses, schools, health centers, water and electricity facilities and community amenities. Subtitled in English

Facts & figures

Cooperatives worldwide have nearly 1,000 million members and generate 100 million jobs, 20% more than multinational companies (2012)

Previous data |

ICA Americas Newsletter

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