Week of Sept. 9 – Sept. 15, 2007, Vol. 2, No. 47

Edited and Compiled for you, by the Rising Tide Collective

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Openings“Someday perhaps the inner light will shine forth from us, and then we'll need no other light.” - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe www.imagi-nation.com/moonstruck/clsc20.html  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

·     AFCOOP in Halifax, NS, is presenting FIRST EXPOSURE, a series of fall filmmaking workshops. The workshops are designed to introduce the basics and expand the development of filmmaking skills. Participants are encouraged to take as many classes as they want from AFCOOP’s diversified workshop catalogue. FIRST EXPOSURE features 17 evening workshops plus an exciting new series called “The Dramatic Film Lab”, a 16 week extensive course in film production. This fall, the co-op is also featuring an intensive editing workshop with feature film editor Alan Collins. The workshop staff is comprised of local industry professionals and established filmmakers. All workshops are located at The Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative, CBC Radio building, 5600 Sackville St., Halifax, NS, unless otherwise stated. WORKSHOP DATES: September 11, 2007 to mid December 2007 PRICE: $30.00 AFCOOP Members / $45.00 Non-members (unless otherwise indicated)

·     Credit unions across Prince Edward Island are once again proud of the success of their annual Golf for Wishes. More than $20,000 was raised. This year, 36 teams participated, representing organizations and business from PEI and Atlantic Canada. http://www.peicreditunions.com/news/article.php?ID=598


Trends – Last week I wrote about co-operative conversions and said I was not sure whether it was a trend or not. I still do not know. But a little research shows there are lots of resources (on the Web at least) purporting to help co-ops stave off conversion, or demutualisation, as it may be called, especially in insurance circles. Oddly enough, or not so oddly, once you read about it, the success of a co-operative can lead to a perceived need to convert to a more capitalist form of organization. The thought process goes a little like this: your co-op has been listening to members, providing everything you want/require from your co-op to the point where members become apathetic – life is good, if it ain’t broke... Management, perhaps the board too, embark on visions of grandeur that require more capital than what the members can or want to provide (remember, they are happy as is and have not really been told of the vision), and the push is on to convert and essentially buy out the member owners. About the only thing worse than having apathetic members when things are going well is having apathetic members when things aren’t going well. Hmmm...maybe member apathy is the trend we should be worried about? Find out more about co-operative conversions at the Canadian Co-operative Association’s website: <http://www.coopscanada.coop/resources/publications/articles/>– Ron Levesque


Circle of Life - Back-to-SchoolActive & Safe Routes to School:  As a follow-up to last week, and a return to school, we feature a program that focuses on active kids, safe routes to school and activities that protect the environment.  Active & Safe Routes to School is “a comprehensive community-based initiative that taps into the increasingly urgent demand for safe, walkable neighbourhoods.”  Go to www.saferoutestoschool.ca to learn more and click on Tour the World to find a program in your neighborhood. 

Remember to keep sending your waste-not tips to for the next two weeks. We will be sharing those tips in Week 48.  – Bronwyn MacKinnon


What is Your Vision Statement?  –This week, a vision statement from the HMECU (Healthcare and Municipal Employees Credit Union in Ontario. Its vision: “To be the financial institution of choice among the public sector and healthcare employees and their families” http://www.hmecu.com/about.php Send your co-operative or credit union vision statement to News1@nbnet.nb.ca


Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree  - The North American Students of Co-operation (NASCO) are hosting their annual Institute for Co-operative Education and Training in Ann Arbor, Michigan from November 2-4. The purpose of the conference is “to share ideas, learn new skills, and look at issues affecting the cooperative movement worldwide”. They are expecting about 400 young co-operators from across the US and Canada to attend and partake in sessions concerning student co-ops, women and co-ops, building communities and more. Early-bird registration closes October 5, so visit NASCO’s website at http://www.nasco.coop/institute/ and register soon (scholarships for travel and registration available). – Erin Hancock


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 Joshua in Fredericton, NB: “What I learned was that the world still is underdeveloped and that not many people are helping people around the world to develop. I learned that we are very lucky to live in Canada and that other countries have some cool things. I thought that the type of money she gave the class at the end of the presentation was really cool because it had a hole in it.”


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 feature Fair Trade Quilts and Crafts Your purchases from this group helps provide sustainable incomes to the artisans that hand craft the patchwork quilts, and other crafts. http://www.fairtradequilts.com/index.html Get a jump on Christmas shopping!


Co-op Community Bulletin Board

·     September 18 - Member Association Meeting – CCC Sackville, 7 PM, Coastal Inn

·     September 18 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Mapleton Road and Record St stores, Moncton, 7PM, Lions Club

·     September 20 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Braemore, 7 PM, St Ninian’s Place, Antigonish, NS

·     September 24 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Pictou County, 7PM, St Gregory’s Parish Hall

·     September 24 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Sydney, 6:30 PM, Steel Workers Hall

·     September 24 – Member Association Meeting – CCC River Road, 7 PM, KBM Hall

·     September 25 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Corridor, 6:30 PM, Shubenacadie Legion

·     September 25 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Saint John, 7 PM, Saint Mark’s Church

·     September 26 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Carol Wabush, 8 PM, Union Center

·     September 26 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Central Farmers Rustico, 7 PM, Rustico Lions Club

·     September 26 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Ken Val, 7 PM, Saint Mark’s Church Hall

·     September 27 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Consumers and Central Farmers Spring Park, 7 PM, Farm Center, University Avenue

·     September 27 – Member Association Meeting – CCC Mid Valley, 7 PM, Carleton Civic Center

·     September 27-30 – Atlantic Co-operative Youth Leadership camp,  Camp Gencheff, PEI http://www.acyl.coop/english/index.htm

·     September 27 - the Credit Union Atlantic  Fall Classic Golf Tournament in support of Junior Achievement of Nova Scotia. The tournament takes place at Oakfield Golf & County Club https://www.cua.com/

·     November 22-24 CWCF's AGM/Conference “Community Sustainaibility & Worker Co-ops”, Ancaster, Ontario. The basic info on the conference is available at:
http://coopzone.coop/en/node/2022.  It will be updated with details

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


Contest of the week – Last week the first correct submission was from Marty Frost in  British Columbia (Maybe he picked apples in the beautiful Okanagan Valley when he was young.) Well done, Marty !!  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: It’s fall and apple picking time in the Annapolis Valley. A man had to pack a sack of apples into packets but as each packet had to have exactly the same number of apples he was having difficulty. If he packed 10 apples per packet, one packet only had 9. If he packed 9 apples per packet, one packet only had 8. If he packed 8 apples per packet, one packet only had 7. If he packed 7 apples per packet, one packet only had 6. And so on down to 2 apples. How many apples did he start with? Answer:  2519 This week’s contest:  Three people check into a hotel. They pay $30 to the manager and go to their room. The manager suddenly remembers that the room rate is $25 and gives $5 to the bellboy to return to the people. On the way to the room the bellboy reasons that $5 would be difficult to share among three people so he pockets $2 and gives $1 to each person. Now each person paid $10 and got back $1. So they paid $9 each, totalling $27. The bellboy has $2, totalling $9. Where is the missing $1?


Co-op Ed 101 - In a recent issue of Farm Focus I found this story on Retaining and recruiting the next generation of farmers in Cape Breton - Elderfield Farm Cooperative http://www.atlanticfarmfocus.ca/index.cfm?iid=2758&sid=24252 I was reminded of the area around the Miramichi where I spent my summers on my grandparents’ hobby farm, a 1100 acre wood lot, large apple orchard, and vegetable garden. Next door was Harold MacLean’s  big dairy farm where the Northumberland Co-op truck came for milk pickup a couple of times a week  Just down the road there were lots of small farms and a few large ones . All of them are gone now.  The fields are fallow or reverted to scrubland.  I wonder if in 50 years there will be a reversal or will all out food be imported? Lars Willum is the host and producer of a popular regional television show “Be My Guest”.  “If kids don’t gain an appreciation of where their food comes from at an early age, the value of agriculture becomes lost to them. I personally think that if agriculture is approached in a sustainable way, it’s a great profession for young people to become involved in,” says Willum. “There’s a range of opportunities out there at every level.” – Maureen MacLean


Co-op Cooking – Here on the South Shore of Nova Scotia we have a passion for Cucumber Salad; a mixture of pressed, thinly sliced cucumber, onion and sour cream. If your garden is producing as many cucumbers as ours, try freezing some of them to use during the winter.

 Cucumber Salad from the Freezer

 4 quarts thinly sliced cucumber           

2 tbsp salt                                       

1 1/2 cups vinegar

2 cups sugar

In large bowl, sprinkle cucumbers with salt, cover with a plate which fits into bowl and add weight to press; (a juice bottle filled with water works well). Let stand 2 to 3 hours. Drain well. In saucepan, combine vinegar and sugar. Bring to boil. Stir into cucumber and let stand 1 hour. Ladle into containers leaving 1/2-inch headspace, and freeze.

To use, thaw slowly in refrigerator. Drain and add a sprinkle of white pepper and sufficient sour cream to coat cucumber. Add thinly sliced onion if desired. Instead of sour cream, canned milk may be added to undrained cucumbers. -  Glenna Weagle


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Co-op Circles is part of Rising Tide Collective’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, September 19, 2007