Week of Oct. 26 – Nov. 1, 2008, Vol. 3, No. 45

Edited and Compiled for you, by the Rising Tide Collective

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Openings  - “Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.” - Kahlil Gibran en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khalil_Gibran  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

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This Week in Co-op Circles

·      After 67 years Moncton Co-op Food Market on Record Street in Moncton, NB, will close. John Harvie, CEO of Coop Atlantic, presided over a meeting on Oct. 28, called to inform members that the Co-op store on Record Street will close November 15th. With the conversion of the CCC stores to corporate stores earlier this year, decisions on these stores are made by the board of Coop Atlantic. Harvie and the executive management team had recommended to the Co-op Atlantic board on Monday, Oct 27, that the store close.  Decreasing sales, aging infrastructure, insufficient member support, together with increased competition in the Moncton area, made it impossible to achieve the sales needed to keep the store open. The lower floor will continue to be rented to the Frenchy’s franchise and the Co-op Furniture store that was opened on the premises in 2008, will continue to operate. Attempts will be made to rent the top floor. Approximately 150 members and staff came out on a cool, rainy night to hear the announcement. Some, like George Labelle and Greg Murphy, had been members since the current facility was built in 1962. Although everyone understood the implications of having less than 12 per cent of the members actively shopping at the store and projected sales at $4 million less than four years ago, most  expressed sadness at  losing their co-op and what they considered a landmark in downtown . Labelle who has been a proponent of more co- op education for more than 60 years said, “We are in this position because people don’t feel they belong so they don’t shop or go to meetings.”  Harvie outlined the process and time line to close the facility and encouraged everyone to continue shopping co-op at the Mapleton Road or Dieppe store.

·      Braemore Co-op Food Market held its fall member meeting on Tuesday evening, Oct. 28. About 20 members and staff turned out to hear how the store was progressing. The meeting included a presentation by Colleen Cameron, who co-chairs a local group, VOICES, which is concerned with increasing local food capacity and food security. She talked about the co-op’s partnership with the group in its food box initiative. About 35 bags are packed at Braemore every second Thursday. All of the produce contained in those bags is grown in the Antigonish area. It’s packed in a Co-op bag, ready for pick up. Also, the VOICES group was able to hire a summer student this year and had a community garden behind the Antigonish Farm and Garden Co-op, which helped those who would not normally have had an opportunity to grow their own food, to get involved in garden maintenance and growing.

·      Lewisporte Co-op in Lewisporte, NL, donated from its 50/ 50 lottery during Co-op Week to assist with overseas  co-op development. Manager Gordon Head was pleased to send a cheque in the amount $1095 toward Canadian Co-operative Association projects around the world. During Co-op Week the 50/50 raised $2190 so a member also took home a cheque for $1095. Gordon Head has been a long time supporter of Co-op Development Foundation and has been the manager of the store with the highest donation for three consecutive years.

·      C103 radio and the credit unions of Moncton and surrounding area are Bringing Down Hunger One Foot at a Time! http://omista.com/news_detail.aspx?news_id=70 Credit unions  purchased a shelf in the Food Depot Alimentaire Buy A Shelf campaign and they then  asked people  to help them bring Tim the local radio announcer down by purchasing a 2nd shelf! Starting Thursday, October 23rd at 6 am, Tim Cormier was lifted 80 feet in the air above the corner of Vaughan Harvey Boulevard and Main Street. For every $50 raised from the public, Tim was lowered one foot until all $4000 was raised.

·      Community Leadership Award CHOICE REWARDSTM MasterCard®, Advance Savings Credit Union, OMISTA Credit Union, http://omista.com/news.aspx?isarchive=0 PSE Credit Union and Rexton Credit Union presented the CHOICE REWARDSTM MasterCard® and Credit Union Community Leadership Award to the Maritime Junior "A" Hockey League team player who best exemplifies credit union values of community involvement, responsibility and leadership. The recipient of the award for the 2007/2008 season is Corey Garland of the Dieppe Commandos (formerly the Moncton Beavers).

·      Lameque Co-op employees have shown the community spirit that distinguishes Co-op stores by raising $2,000 for the Relay for Life in support of cancer research.

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Trends - If you spend a bit of time on the internet, you have likely heard of Web 2.0. Very, very, very simply, Web 2.0 is the current iteration of a number of internet technologies that work together to present a specific user experience – one that enhances creativity, information sharing, collaboration and functionality. In the Web 2.0 world, users collaborate to create and share information, oftentimes for free, oftentimes using different media to achieve the experience. Some of the more well-known Web 2.0 sites are eBay, Flikr, MySpace, FaceBook, Blogspot, YouTube. All of these rely on users to create content for them to be successful. And for the most part, users are creating content in ways that boggle the mind. Web 2.0 technologies are being put to productive use – in learning, in communications, in socializing. It’s a really fun time to be a citizen of the net. (I’ve written about some Web 2.0 sites in the past, particularly the wefeelfine.org site.) The big debate these days is whether or not Web 2.0 (and Web 3.0 in the future) will be able to replace traditional media for audience share. eBay has created its own economy (you can buy anything there); YouTube is now being used by corporations to flog products and services; Wikipedia is often quoted with authority; and BlogSpot is home to armchair (as well as renowned) editorialists from around the world. And that’s just the surface. See more about Web 2.0 on Wikipedia.   - Ron Levesque

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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. This week: “During today’s presentation I learned that each of us has potential given the right resources and support. People living in underdeveloped countries need a hand up rather that a hand out to help improve their quality of life, not only for themselves but for their families and communities as well.” - Sherri H, Moncton NB

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Out of the Ordinary –The Just Us! Development and Education Society (JUDES) has partnered with a Fair Trade, organic coffee farming community of Chayotepec, situated in the Oaxaca region of Mexico to offer an unique opportunity for a small-group, guided, responsible travel experience that respects local peoples and the environment. Participants will learn about the ancient Zapotec culture and how they have protected their forests for thousands of years.  They will try their hands at harvesting coffee, hear the stories and music of this rich cultural area, relax and enjoy the tranquility, and experience local food. There are two departure dates: Saturday, February 14 – Sunday, February 22, 2009 or Saturday, February 28 – Sunday, March 8, 2009. Cost is$1350 per person (excludes flights & insurance).  Fees include all transportation within Oaxaca (private van), 8 nights accommodation (double-occupancy), knowledgeable and bilingual guides, meals, entrance to historic sites, and most activities.  The fee also includes a Sustainability Fee (towards Gold Standard carbon offsets for international and local travel & local environmental projects), a Reciprocity Fund (to bring representatives from producer communities to Canada), and a contribution toward the administration and education costs of JUDES. Registration deadline is 30 days prior to departure.  Space is limited (max: 9 people / trip). You can learn more by watching a short video on YouTube at www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPgfd40SKIU, contacting info@judesfairtrade.ca or by phone at 542-7474 ext 235 or attend an information session in Halifax or Wolfville, NS. JUDES (the Just Us! Development and Education Society) is a not-for-profit organization committed to raising public awareness about the social and environmental issues relating to international development and the benefits of Fair Trade.  Founded in 2006 with the support of Just US! Coffee Roasters Co-operative, it works to strengthen the relationship between producers and consumers and help individuals in living justly and lightly on the planet.  www.judesfairtrade.ca

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Co-op Ed 101 - Reverse Trick-or-Treating:  Co-op America  http://www.coopamerica.org/ is once again teaming up with Global Exchange  http://www.globalexchange.org/  to support reverse trick-or-treating, the new Halloween tradition of children handing Fair Trade chocolate back to their neighbours. The candy is attached to a card that includes information about social and environmental justice issues in the cocoa industry and how Fair Trade chocolate helps farmers across the world in cocoa growing communities. Last year more than 47,000 households learned about Fair Trade chocolate thanks to Fair Trade trick-or-treaters. http://greenhalloween.org/blog/?tag=co-op-america - Maureen MacLean

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Co-op Community Bulletin Board

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

§      Nov. 7-9 - The North American Students of Co-operation annual institute (learning gathering) is being held from in Ann Arbor, Michigan. “Grassroots Run Deep” is conference title. Visit www.nasco.coop/institute/

§      Nov 13-15 – Canadian Worker Co-op Federation AGM and Conference, Winnipeg, MB www.coopzone.coop/CWCF_Conf08  

§      Nov 15, 2008 – CUSO’s Dance for the World event, Halifax, NS

§      Feb 2 – 5, 2009 Institute for Co-operative Studies, Banff, AB. Presented by the Canadian Co-operative Association, the Institute of Co-operative Studies is the only national co-operative event that contributes to the development of leadership across organizations and sectors within a co-operative and credit union context. Details, as they become available, will be posted to www.CoopsCanada.coop/meetings/instituteofcoopstudies.

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Contest of the Week – Last week we had lots of fun answers. The first one in was from Ron Levesque,  NB, followed by Marty Frost, BC, Cathy Darland, NB,  and Glenna Weagle, NS. Good luck!!! Everyone who enters has their name placed in the contest can for the month end drawing The Contest entry deadline each week is Tuesday, 12 noon.  Send your answer to contest1@nbnet.nb.ca. Last week’s contest:  Find two words that rhyme and fit the description:

1. Game anxiety? deer fear – we also received chess stress, quarry worry
2. Blouse Stain?  shirt dirt – we also received top spot,
3. One who lives in the basement? cellar dweller – we also received cellar feller
4. Magical Iguana?  wizard lizard
5. Arachnid’s beverage?  spider cider

This week’s contest: Can you determine what makes the following sentence unusual?

“Next, pour liquid back in my five dozen washed jugs.”

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Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree - The Prince Edward Island Co-operative Council is seeking a Youth Director. If you would like more information, contact Executive Director, Charlie Crockett at 902-569-7322 or email him crockett@peicc.coop  - Erin Hancock

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Co-op Cooking –These days it seems you can feel Autumn in the air. When days get cooler, it's nice to come in from working in the garden or some other activity and find a good meal waiting. Slow cookers are, it seems, just made for these days.
Autumn Harvest Stew
1 lb. boneless pork shoulder, trimed of fat and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 cups peeled, cubed sweet potatoes
2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 small cooking apples, cored and cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 medium onion, chopped
3/4 tsp dried thyme, crushed
1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups apple cider or apple juice
In a 3 1/2 or 4-quart crockery cooker, layer potatoes, parsnip, apples and onion. Sprinkle with thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper. Add meat. Pour apple cider or juice over all.
Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 7 to 8 hours or on high-heat setting for 3 1/2 to 4 hours (or unitl meat and vegetables are tender. Ladle into bowls. Tip - A slow cooker should be at least 1/2 full to cook properly. If you are making a dish which does not fill your cooker to this level, add a few more veggies or some extra fruit.- 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 world. We 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, Nov. 5, 2008