Week of Jan. 6 – Jan. 12, 2008, Vol. 3, No. 8

Edited and Compiled for you, by the Rising Tide Collective

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Openings – “Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.” -  Chief Seattle www.chiefseattle.com/history/chiefseattle/chief.htm 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

§      The Board of Directors of Community Credit Union in Truro, Amherst and Bass River, NS, has announced the appointment of Darrell Kuhn as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Community Credit Union, effective December 3, 2007. Kuhn brings over 28 years of financial knowledge and experience to benefit the credit union and its customer–owners, and has considerable senior level experience in the financial services industry in Atlantic Canada, having been CEO of both Credit Union Central and Risk Management Agency in New Brunswick for the past nine years. “Darrell’s combination of knowledge and financial experience in the credit union system will be a great contribution to Community Credit Union as we move forward with new energy in 2008,” said Howard Welch, Chair of Community Credit Union. Community Credit Union currently serves over 9,000 customer-owners and provides a full range of financial services including savings, term deposits, consumer loans, residential mortgages, business loans and business mortgages through branches in Amherst, Truro and Bass River. http://www.ns-credit-unions.com/default.asp?id=190&pagesize=1&sfield=content.id&search=325&mn=

§      Personnel from Devco, a British Columbia-based consulting workers’ co-op are launching an Advanced Co-op Developer Training session.  This session builds on the very successful and well-received Introductory Co-op Development Training that Devco has delivered since 1994 in a number of locations in Canada. A three-day session will be delivered in Moncton on Feb 26–28.  The content has been designed by a team of experienced co-op developers that includes Devco members Melanie Conn and Marty Frost, Executive Director of SEED Winnipeg Cindy Coker and Blair Hamilton of Dungannon Consulting in Manitoba; and Peter Hough, financial officer for the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation and David Daughton, regional coordinator of the Canadian CED Network (CCEDNet) in the Maritimes.  The project has the financial support of CDI – Innovations and Research. This will be an opportunity for participants to gain more knowledge about the development of cooperatives and to increase their skill in assisting potential co-op groups.  The training is designed for those whose work now involves co-op development or is anticipated to in the future, e.g. in government, Community Futures Corporation, credit union or co-operative, non-profit organization, or independent consultancy, and who have attended some form of basic/introductory training about co-ops and co-op development. A detailed outline is posted at http://www.coopzone.coop/en/node/2070

§      Ann McIsaac from PEI Basket Weavers Co-op sends news that their building project is well under way and they hope to have the steel roof on soon. The co-op is located west of Summerside and is well situated to expand their sales in 2008. For more info contact Ann at tommycod@pei.sympatico.ca]

§      Nova Scotia’s co-operatives and credit unions, in partnership with several Nova Scotia doctors, recently launched a for profit business venture called Connecting People for Health Co-operative Ltd.  Connecting People for Health is Canada’s first and only on-line health care clinic, specifically designed from a patient perspective, that allows individuals and families to participate in the management of their own healthcare through secure web-based tools, information and support. The Nova Scotia Securities Commission has approved the sale of 300 shares to individuals under the Community Economic Development Investment Fund (CEDIF) program. Shares are $5000 each. These shares are in addition to the corporate investments from Nova Scotia co-operatives and credit unions. The CEDIF program allows Nova Scotians to invest in Nova Scotia business ventures and receive a 30% provincial income tax credit. The investment is also RRSP eligible. For further information, email Dianne Kelderman at diannefk@tru.eastlink.ca or call 902-896-7291.

§      Credit Union Central of Canada is now accepting nominations for the 2008 National Credit Union Awards in three categories: Community Economic Development, Innovation, and the Young Leaders Award. These annual awards recognize and reward credit unions and individuals who made a difference to their community and who exemplify the true nature of the cooperative spirit.
 Entries must be submitted on or before February 11, 2008.  details at Email: wilkinsone@cucentral.com, Tel: (416) 232-3421, Fax: (416) 232-3734


Trends – This week’s Trends is less about trends, and more about a New Year’s resolution I am encouraging everyone to take. The gist of this week’s subject comes from an article I read last week carried by Reuters which had the headline: “Healthy Food Getting More Expensive: Study”. “Just wonderful”, I thought quite cynically. The story quoted a study by researchers at the University of Washington that showed that “...low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods – mainly fruits and vegetables – were far more expensive, calorie for calorie, than sweets and snack foods.” I paused and pondered the article...then it hit me: “Well duh!” I thought to myself with an air of self-satisfaction...of course fruits and vegetables are more expensive calorie for calorie... they have less calories! My own quick math shows that a medium sized apple has about 72 calories and sells for about 50 cents. A box of Smarties has 230 calories and sells for about $1. You would have to buy 3.2 apples to ‘match’ the 230 calories of one box of Smarties, or pay about $1.60. There it is in black and white, so it must be true...The really sad part of this is that if you Google ‘healthy food more expensive’, you will get tons of hits to news services that are carrying the original article. And with the researchers also suggesting that ‘because healthy food is getting more expensive, it is contributing to the obesity problem in the US’, well you just have to wonder how it is that society makes any progress at all...And the New Year’s resolution? Eat apples instead of Smarties – at the very least, many apples grow in local orchards – and think critically about everything you read. - Ron Levesque


Circle of Life - Eco-Loans:  Bergengren Credit Union in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, has just launched Eco loans to promote sustainable purchasing.  The loans can be used to purchase energy efficient vehicles, Energy Star products and alternative energy sources. The credit union says that the Eco loans have been introduced to encourage their customer owners to “Follow our Footprints”.  For more information: https://www.bergengrencu.com/Home/ProductsAndServices/YourFinancing/EcoLoans/

Bronwyn MacKinnon


Co-op Ed 101 - Our Co-op in Moncton (Record St. location), with the help of staff and volunteers, opened a book exchange in November. We ask members to donate books and magazines and then we sell them to members for $1.00 or $.50. We are so excited with the response. We have brought in more than $100 in just eight weeks. The store’s local council donated $70 to a needy family at Christmas and will decide what projects we can support as books continue to sell.  I was looking for other examples of such a project done through a co-operative.  Although this is not a book exchange, the following co-op book store has been in existence for more than 50 years. People’s Co-operative Bookstore http://www.peoplescoopbookstore.com/  Date of Incorporation: July 17, 1945 Membership: approximately 700 Activities: Consumer-owned bookstore, focusing on progressive literature Area Served: Lower Mainland, BC



 - Maureen MacLean 


Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree - The Coady International Institute located within St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, NS is currently accepting applications for their 2008 programs, including the Diploma in Development Leadership, Advocacy and Citizen Engagement and more. To learn more about their programs, visit http://www.coady.stfx.ca/education/index.cfm and find the application forms at  http://www.coady.stfx.ca/education/apply.cfm . Be sure to apply early in order to be considered for bursaries. 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 Matt, NB, Grade 8: “One thing I learned was the schools in the Philippines have no glass in the windows. I thought the different clothes were interesting. I learned that a lot of people do different things and live different ways. I can’t stop wondering about why more people won’t help. In your presentation I really liked the things that you brought in to show, especially the worry doll and wonderful weaving. I also liked that you had pictures of the schools.”


Temagami, ON is the home of TREC North (The Renewable Energy Co-operative North Inc.) It is a not-for-profit co-operative and its mission is to develop sustainable communities through energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. In partnership with the Municipality, TREC North is fundraising to complete a one year wind resource assessment and business plan for a wind farm in Temagami. This project is projected to produce 9 MW of electricity using 5 community-owned wind turbines at 1.8MW each. TREC North aims to generate a surplus of energy to sell back to the grid and dividends for co-op members. For more information on TREC North, please visit www.trecnorth.ca


Co-op Community Bulletin Board

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

·     Feb 26-28 – Advanced Co-op Developer training, Moncton, NB -  A detailed outline is posted at http://www.coopzone.coop/en/node/2070

·     April 26 – Co-op Atlantic Annual General Meeting

·     June 23-28, 2008 - What’s Working in Community Development conference, Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia The pre-conference announcement can be downloaded from: http://www.horizonscda.ca/PDF%20Files/PreConfLo.pdf  If you are submitting an abstract or presentation outline, it must be received by December 31st, 2007.  The call for abstracts/presentations can be downloaded from: http://www.horizonscda.ca/PDF%20Files/AbstractsLo.pdf


Contest of the Week - We did not publish a contest over the holiday break but I want to thank one of our readers, who frequently sends in answers, for the cute riddle he sent with his Christmas good wishes. Q: Where do snowmen put their money?  A: In snowbanks 

The contest entry deadline each week is Tuesday, 12 noon.  Send your answer to contest1@nbnet.nb.ca.  All entries will be placed in the “Contest Can” for the month end draw. This week’s contest:  Messrs Butcher, Baker, Carpenter and Plumber are currently attending an annual convention. No one is currently, nor ever has been in the same profession as their name and no one has had the same profession twice. Charlie has never been a carpenter and Mr Butcher is now a plumber. Dave used to be a butcher, whereas Mr Brian Baker never has. Mr Plumber is not called Eddie and Mr Carpenter did not used to be a butcher. Can you determine the full names of each of the attendees, along with their current and previous profession? Good Luck


Co-op Cooking – When things have me running in circles, I sometimes look for a meal in a hurry. This one can be on the table in about 20 minutes (even faster if your local grocer sells fresh veggies pre-chopped for stir-fry).    
Cajun Chicken Linguine
4 oz linguine pasta
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
2 tsp Cajun seasoning
1 tbsp olive oil
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
4 fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped
1/2 red onion, coarsely chopped
1 cup Alfredo sauce with roasted garlic
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp lemon pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Cook pasta according to package directions. While cooking, heat large skillet or wok. Chop chicken into bite-sized pieces; add Cajun seasoning, mixing well. Add chicken to hot pan and stir-fry until no longer pink. Add veggies and stir-fry 2-3 minutes. Reduce heat. Add Alfredo sauce, basil, lemon pepper, garlic powder and black pepper. Stir to mix. Add cooked linguine; stir gently to mix well. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese to serve. - 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, January 16, 2008