Week of June 10 – June 16, 2007, Vol. 2, No. 34

Edited and Compiled,  for you, by the Rising Tide Collective

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Openings“My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am.” -Author Unknown Openings is a weekly feature of Co-op Circles. Send your favourite quote about celebrating co-operatives, communities and a better world for all, to News1@nbnet.nb.ca


This Week in Co-op Circles

·     As a credit union, Steel Centre in Sydney, NS, believes in giving back to its community.  It has been doing this for many years by supporting local charities, clubs and organizations. One such club is the Northside 4-H Club. Staff member Marian Turner has been involved with the club as a leader for six years.  Her daughter is a member of the club as well.  Northside 4-H currently has over fifty members, many of whom are entered in the sewing project.  Steel Centre Credit Union purchased a sewing machine to present to Ruth MacNeil, general leader and sewing teacher.  The presentation was made this spring in North Sydney. The credit union is also a major sponsor of the Canadian Cancer Society's Relay For Life which was held last week. Team registration was held at the credit union, as well as its entire staff volunteered on the night of the event. http://www.steelcentrecreditunion.ca/

·     In order to meet the rapidly rising consumer demand for food produced in Nova Scotia, the Farmer’s Markets of Nova Scotia Co-operative, with the participation of the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and Agrapoint, has contracted with Service Canada (HRSDC) to carry out a Labour Market Development Study. The purpose of the study is to give us accurate information that will allow it to effectively bring more Nova Scotia producers (and their products) into the markets. Having a greater range of quality local products in all of the member markets means that individual customers will tend to fill more of their needs, that is, to spend more during each visit to a market, and that all producers, whether of food, hand-made goods or services, will realize greater sales, because the number of customers in our markets will continue to increase. http://nsfarmersmarkets.ca/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1


Trends – (Editor’s Note: This week we welcome Ron Levesque into the Circle. He is an information junkie, as well as possessing a keen interest in all things co-operative. We look forward to his contributions!) Good Wednesday! I'm calling this contribution to Co-op Circles ‘Trends’, but it could just as easily be titled ‘Found on the Web’ or ‘Happening Somewhere’... What I would like to do is introduce subscribers to trends or things happening elsewhere in the world, and ideally – but not necessarily – related to co-operatives. This week, I would like to talk about podcasts. What are podcasts? Podcasts started as audio media that was delivered initially to iPod music players – hence the name ‘podcast’ – but they have quickly evolved into media available to computers, for the most part. A podcast can be audio, audio-visual or another recent trend, Portable Document Format (PDF) files that you can view on your screen or print out. One recent evolution is that podcasters are now offering transcripts along with their audio or audio-visual podcasts. Think of podcasts as radio programs or television programs available anytime you want them. While you don’t need special software or hardware to play podcasts, there is software that makes the whole podcast experience more like watching TV or listening to the radio, but with direct access to a program guide with hundreds of thousands of programs of your choosing. The great thing about using software to manage podcasts is that you can ‘subscribe’ to a series of podcasts, and your computer will either advise you or even download new ones as they become available. Some gadgets also allow you to play podcasts on your car radio or on your television. (I use iTunes – free, at www.apple.com/itunes  – to manage my podcasts, but there are other applications available that do sensibly the same thing - Juice is only one example, available free, at www.juicereceiver.sourceforge.net/index.php    Beyond the resources available through iTunes or any other podcast directory, there are many other podcasts available directly from universities, media sources, and other organizations that make subscribing and listening to podcasts very appealing to information junkies like me. Princeton University, as do many other universities, offers many lectures as podcasts, including a five-part series titled “Food, Ethics and the Environment”. Podcast subject matter is varied – everything from Astronomy to Zoology is available – you can learn to play guitar, cook, speak Greek, or learn about philosophy, all free thanks to podcasts; all available simply by searching with your podcast software, or any popular search engine. In the coming months, I will try to highlight some of my favourite podcasts that I think may be interesting to Co-op Circles readers. One area that is sorely underrepresented: podcasts related to co-operatives, though there are some...notably from the BC Institute for Co-operative Studies and Kootenay Co-op Radio. More on them later.  - Ron Levesque


What is Your Vision Statement?  –This week, a vision statement from Steel Centre Credit Union in Sydney, NS.  “Steel Centre Credit Union is a locally owned co-operative financial institution providing quality financial products and solutions to enable our members to achieve their financial goals.” http://www.steelcentrecreditunion.ca/ Send your co-operative or credit union vision statement to News1@nbnet.nb.ca


Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree with Erin Hancock - The Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet) has posted a 24-week position for a Youth Services Assistant which is funded in part by the Government of Canada and based in Victoria, BC. CCEDNet is a network of community organizations that spans the entire country, including a plethora of co-operative members.

This position entails tasks such as writing articles and newsletters, organizing teleconferences, assisting with youth recruitment, helping with program funding applications and others.  The hiring committee is looking for someone who fits the following criteria among others:

• Bilingual
• a post-secondary college or university graduate, out of school

• can demonstrate a lack of labour market attachment to field of study (under-employed or unemployed)

• can demonstrate that working in the field of community economic development is a career goal
• has not previously participated in a Service Canada Career Focus work experience placement

For more information on CCEDNet please go to its Web site: www.ccednet-rcdec.ca You may contact Farrar Brodhead at fbrodhead@ccednet-rcdec.ca with questions. Applications are due to Farrar over email (attach CV and letter of application) by Friday, June 15.


Co-op Ed 101:  Last week when I was in Prince Edward Island, I noticed the many signs for fresh and cooked lobster. The spring lobster season will soon close in PEI, on June 30.  For many fish plants like Royal Star Foods http://www.royalstarfoods.com/  work continues after the close of fishing as they work to boost export sales and develop new markets. Royal Star Foods Limited, which is a subsidiary of Tignish Fisheries Co-operative Association Ltd., has a long history dating back to 1922. The company was formed by a group of concerned fishermen who wanted a better way of life for themselves, their families and their community. It was then called Tignish Fishermen’s Union. Construction of the Royal Star Foods plant began in 1995 and, at present, is one of the largest and most modern state of the art seafood processing plants in Eastern Canada. Today the Co-op boasts a strong membership of 215 and an employee work force of 350 to 400. For more about this year’s fishery see http://www.theguardian.pe.ca/index.cfm?sid=25824&sc=98


You CAN Do That the ‘Co-op’ Way - Each week, we feature a co-operative or collective formed to meet a particular need in communities around the world. This week, we visit the Dairy Goat Co-operative (N.Z.) Ltd ("DGC") in New Zealand. It is the world’s leading manufacturer of goat milk nutritional powder products. DGC developed the world’s first commercialized infant formula from goat milk, the world’s first long-life goat milk, and continues to develop and manufacture a range of premium specialty formulations based on goat milk. http://www.dgc.co.nz/


Co-op Community Bulletin Board

·      June 22, 23 and 24: 61e Congrès annuel du Conseil Canadien de la Coopération à Québec, Québec City, Québec

·      June 26 – 29: Co-operative Development: Harness the Hidden Potential, National Congress and Canadian Co-operative Association and Newfoundland-Labrador Federation of Co-operatives AGMs, St. John’s, NL. Through a range of interactive and participative keynote presentations, plenary discussions and workshops, the Congress sessions will explore what co-operative development means and how the system can look to build a lasting legacy for the communities it serves. As part of the broader discussions over the three days, sessions will include dialogue and learning exchanges focusing on leadership and movement-building strategies from a global, national and local perspective. For more information, go to www.CoopsCanada.coop/Congress2007.

·      July 20-22:  Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy: Building Cooperation East and South, University of North Carolina, Asheville, NC

Remember to send news items and bulletin board items to News1@nbnet.nb.ca


Contest of the week – Last week, our first correct entry was from Catherine Ann Fuller, Cape Breton.  Contest entry deadline each week is Tuesday, 12 noon.  Send your answer to contest1@nbnet.nb.ca.  All entries will be place in the “Contest Can” for the month end draw. Last week’s contest and answer: Below are some proverbs with their vowels removed. What are the proverbs?


Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
Children and fools must not play with sharp knives.
Dog does not eat dog.
Moderation in all things.
You can’t kid a kidder.

This week’s contest:  What number comes next in this sequence?

1/1 3/2 7/5 17/12 41/29 ==?==


Today I Learned Something New: International Development Through the Eyes of Students - During the year, as part of my work with the Canadian Co-operative Association, I visit schools and talk about co-operatives and communities in developing countries. I always appreciate the insights of the students, shared through comment sheets.  From Donna in Prince Edward Island: “I learned that there are millions of people that have like not a thing after disasters and how that whatever they fundraise the government I think will triple it Then, her organization lends money and animals like water buffaloes to farmers and other people to help reconstruct their community.”


It’s Easy to Cook – Sometimes cooking at my house revolves around the four-legged members of the family. Following are treats for your dogs and cats. My animals will do anything they can to attract attention and earn one or two of these.
 Dog Treats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 packet beef bouillon granules
1 tbsp garlic powder
3/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp oil
Mix dry ingredients. Mix water and oil and add all at once, mixing until well combined. If dough is too sticky, add more flour as needed. Roll out and cut into 1-inch pieces or shapes. Bake at 375F for 1 hour.  When in a hurry, I sprinkle a jelly-roll pan with a small amount of flour and press the mixture onto the pan. Half way through baking remove from oven; cut with a pizza cutter, turn pieces and return to oven. If you wish to change the flavour, try adding one of the following: 1/2 cup grated cheese, peanut butter, cheese spread or crisp, crumbled bacon.
Savory Cheese Cat Treats
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup shredded cheese
5 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup plain yogurt or sour cream
1/4 cup cornmeal
Combine cheese and yogurt. Add flour and cornmeal. Knead into a ball and roll to 1/4 inch. Cut into small pieces and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350F for 25 minutes. -  Glenna Weagle


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Co-op Circles is part of Rising Tide Co-operative’s commitment to the Co-op Principles of Co-op Education and Concern for Community. This electronic newsletter is published every week. It is available free of charge to anyone with an e-mail address and an interest in co-operative and community development in Atlantic Canada and around the worldWe will be happy to put you on our Co-op Circles mailing list. We are proud that co-operators from Canada, the U.S, England, the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand are part of our Circle. To subscribe: circles1@nbnet.nb.ca or to unsubscribe: circles2@nbnet.nb.ca  Tell your friends about it. Please e-mail us with your questions, suggestions and memories at News1@nbnet.nb.ca

Thanks to the Marie Michael Library, Coady International Institute, for archiving Co-op Circles. http://www.coady.stfx.ca/library/coop_circles/index.htm 


Next Co-op Circles: Wednesday, June 20, 2007