Week of Jan. 4 – Jan. 10, 2009, Vol. 4, No. 1

Edited and Compiled for you, by the Rising Tide Collective

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Openings  - “When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.” - Henri Nouwen  www.HenriNouwen.org  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

·      Don Roper, President and CEO, Advance Saving Credit Union, has announced the official amalgamation of Advance Savings and Rexton Credit Union.  Both credit unions closed their respective doors on December 31st, 2008 and reopened on January 2, 2009 as Advance Savings Credit Union.  As part of the amalgamation, Garth Lawson, formerly general manager of Rexton Credit Union, was appointed Vice President of Sales and Services of Advance Savings Credit Union and Janice Rice, formerly Chief Operating Officer, was appointed Vice President of Operations of the newly amalgamated Advance Savings Credit Union. The new credit union has 9,500 owners, employs 55 people and has assets of approximately $124 million. Advance Savings Credit Union currently has seven branches serving Moncton, Petitcodiac, Port Elgin, Rexton, Riverview and Salisbury.

·      Bayview Credit Union in Saint John, NB, is  presenting a minimum of four education awards of $1,000 each to eligible students who are members or whose parents/guardians are members of Bayview Credit Union. Awards are non-renewable but winners may re-apply each year. The awards are contingent upon full-time enrollment in a post-secondary institution. http://bayviewnb.com/assets/client/File/Bayview_Ed_Awards_2009.pdf Applications must reach Bayview Credit Union by the second Friday of May each year.

·      Canada’s national co-op associations are asking co-ops, members and co-op supporters across the country to join the campaign to renew the Co-operative Development Initiative (CDI), a federal program that helps promote and develop new and emerging co-ops. As the Conservative Government and Minister Jim Flaherty put together their recession budget for the end of January,  co-operatives are trying to get the Co-operative Development Initiative included. CDI is a unique  partnership program between the federal government, the Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA) and the Conseil canadien de la co-opération et de la mutualité (CCCM).   It provides technical assistance and project grants to help co-ops get off the ground. This program is scheduled to expire in March, and the CCA and the CCCM have proposed a new and expanded CDI that would increase funding for advisory services, create a new co-operative loan fund where co-ops can access development capital, and continue providing project assistance.  The new program would also continue the Agricultural CDI, which assists bio-energy and value-added agricultural co-ops. For more information on CDI and the tools that will allow you to e-mail your MP, visit www.coopscanada.coop/CDI.

·      A joint initiative among the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, the Credit Union Central of Nova Scotia, local credit unions and the province of Nova Scotia’s Economic Development department and the Office of Immigration will see new immigrants wanting to start small businesses eligible for loans. The pilot program offers immigrants who have lived in Nova Scotia less than five years, up to $150,000 to help them buy, expand or start businesses. The Economic Development department will invest $2 million in the program as a loan guarantee. The Office of Immigration will provide $100,000 per year for operational costs of the program. The program will be administered by the NS Co-operative Council as an extension of an existing small business financial program, which is also administered by the co-op council and delivered through credit unions.

·      A new Web site is being created by St Francis Xavier University to bring together stories of the Antigonish Movement and the Coady International Institute which are currently in pictures, documents and other artifacts around the world in private and public collections. The $90,000 project began in September and will be launched when the Coady Institute celebrates its 50th anniversary this summer. Besides photographs, there will be audio and video clips and newsletters, manuals, speeches, reports, books and other archival materials generated by the Antigonish Movement, and the St. FX Extension Department, beginning in the 1920s.  Rita Campbell, special projects librarian at the university’s library encourages people with artifacts to share to contact her at rcampbel@stfx.ca

·      Shallyn Duke is the winner of the OMISTA Credit Union http://www.omista.com/  2008 student loan contest. Shallyn won a 8GB Zune media player and a $100 Gift Certificate for Co-op! Congrats Shallyn! http://www.omista.com/news_detail.aspx?news_id=72  Joshua Landry is the winner of the “It Belongs to Me Contest”. The contest was spearheaded by the New Brunswick Youth Committee. Youth between the ages of 13 and 25 had an opportunity to win a laptop by designing their ideal credit union using a video, an essay or a song.

·      The youth committee members at Acadian Credit Union in Cheticamp, NS, is always looking for innovative ways to raise money to help them give back to their community. They are currently collecting empty ink cartridges for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and used stamps for Oxfam. You can reach three of the members at the following e-mail addresses:  tdoucet@acadian.creditu.net, llelievre@acadian.creditu.net, and scormier@acadian.creditu.net. They are eager to hear about your ideas and will be happy to tell you what they are doing.


Trends - I’ve written in this space in the past about YouTube and how I thought it could possibly supplant ‘regular’ television as a video content provider, especially for teens, and their older counterparts who don’t know it yet. For example, I can connect my internet enabled iPod to my television and watch YouTube videos (and downloadable movies) directly on my television. Talk about television à la carte – search YouTube, find something, play it on TV. Well, now a website from the Netherlands has gone a step further, taking the best web films to the big screen. Every first Monday of the month, a palette of internet short films is presented at the Movie Theater De Uitkijk in Amsterdam. Members of the web based Upload Cinema submit and vote on films that will be shown on the big screen, all according to a pre-determined monthly theme. On the day of screening, members receive a list of the movies that will be shown that evening, selected by members of the club. The benefits are that this can be done ANYWHERE, includes a modicum of democracy that should appeal to co-operators, and reflects a trend of catered consumption that is taking hold in some places around the world. See http://www.uploadcinema.nl/ for additional information. – Ron Levesque


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: “I heard school students don’t have a school building sometimes in Uganda, just a grass roof. I am glad we have a school. And after school they can’t play outdoors as they have to help their parents.”Derrek, Grade 5, Nova Scotia


Co-op Ed 101 This week in Toronto I noticed the bright Red and Yellow Co-op Cabs so I decided to look up their history. Although there is not a lot of detail on the Web site,  I learned they have been around  for more than 50 years. In the true spirit of a co-operative, Co-op Cabs  http://www.co-opcabs.com/company.html was founded by a group of independent taxicab owners to market their taxicab services to the residents, visitors and businesses in the City of Toronto . Their easily identifiable red and yellow vehicles have been roaming the streets of Toronto since 1957. For more information please call customer service manager, Brian Lattanville at (416) 504-4016 ext. 242 or email at sales@co-opcabs.com - Maureen MacLean


Co-op Community Bulletin Board

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

§      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.


Contest of the WeekWinners of our last contest were Shaun Shea, NS and Larraine Perry, NB. We thank you both. It was a hard one.Well done!!! Everyone who enters has their name placed in the contest can for the month end draw. The contest entry deadline each week is Tuesday, 12 noon.  Send your answer to contest1@nbnet.nb.ca  Good luck! Last contest was to sort out who gave what gift, where and when. Answer :

Sam gave the blue and green wrapped watch to Jill while on a cruise.

Thalia gave the red and white wrapped computer to Jason while at a restaurant.

Victor gave the gift card wrapped in pink to Joe in the living room.

Zach gave the orange and yellow wrapped tickets to Jack in the bedroom.

This week’s contest: Inside each set of the following words, there is a pair of smaller words. By putting & between them, lo & behold, you will make a familiar phrase. For example, "Thighbone/Swallowtail" conceals "High & Low."
1. Gulliver/Clearness
2. Tragicomedy/Pentagon


Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree - JUDES (the Just Us! Development and Education Society) is still accepting participants for their February 28-March 8 educational trip through Oaxaca, Mexico. This trip has a focus on fair trade throughout its urban to rural tour. Registration ends the end of January. The cost is $1350 (includes lodging, food, bilingual guides and more) plus the cost of airfare and insurance. Contact Satya Ramen at info@judesfairtrade.ca or by phone at 542-7474 ext 235 or see this YouTube video to learn more www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPgfd40SKIU - Erin Hancock


Co-op Cooking We are just getting to the tail-end of a blizzard here on the South Shore and, while the sun is shining, the winds are blowing and dropping the temperatures. A perfect day for....
Minestrone Soup
4 slices pancetta or bacon, diced
2 tbsp olive oil
2 medium onions, diced
2 large carrots, coarsely chopped
2 celery stalks, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
10 cups chicken broth
1 28-oz can tomatoes
1 cup whole wheat macaroni or shells
1 lb sliced mushrooms
1tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried basil
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 19-oz can mixed beans (see note), drained and rinsed
4 cups torn fresh spinach leaves
1 tsp pepper sauce (optional
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
In large soup pot, cook bacon until crisp. If it is very lean, add olive oil. Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic; saute for 3 to 5 minutes. Add broth; bring to boil, lower heat and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes, or until vegetables are tender-crisp. Stir in tomatoes (breaking up with a spoon), macaroni, mushrooms, herbs and beans. Cover and cook over medium heat until pasta and mushrooms are cooked. Taste and add hot sauce if desired. Stir in spinach leaves just before serving. Pass Parmesan cheese to sprinkle generously on top. Note: Mixed beans are a medley of kidney beans, chick peas, romano beans and black eyed peas. Variation: Substitute stewed, herbed or diced tomatoes for whole tomatoes. Tips: 1. For easy preparation, chop all vegetables in food processor. 2. Make the soup a few days ahead and freeze or refrigerate covered but don’t add spinach until soup is reheated and ready to serve. Happy New Year, everyone!- 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, Jan. 14, 2009