Week of June 21 – June 27, 2009, Vol. 4, No. 24

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

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Openings  - Openings is a weekly feature of Co-op Circles.  "To see things in the seed, that is genius." - Lao Tzu. http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/Philosophy/Taichi/lao.html 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

§         George MacNeil, Big Bras d'Or, Cape Breton, died this past weekend in a collision between his farm tractor and a tractor trailer. George was well known throughout Cape Breton and beyond. Many co-operators will remember George's presence with his guitar and voice at social gatherings during co-op annual meetings. He was 68 and had served on the board of United Farmers Co-operative, as well as serving in numerous ways that helped make his community, Nova Scotia and Canada a better place to live. He believed in youth and was a strong advocate for the 4-H program. Condolences to the family can be sent to fillmoreandwhiteman@ns.sympatico.ca

§         Alphonse Desjardins, the father of Canada's caisse populaire movement and founder of Canada 's sixth largest financial institution, has been named history's "Greatest Canadian Co-operator" following an online vote by more than 8,000 people across the country. The Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA) announced the winner of the Greatest Canadian Co-operator award at a dinner in Ottawa celebrating the 100th anniversary of Canada 's organized national co-operative movement.  Desjardins, who died in 1920, was one of 14 pioneers of the Canadian co-operative movement nominated for the award.  All 14 were inducted into the virtual Canadian Co-operative Hall of Fame, which was launched at Thursday's event. They included Moses Coady and Rev. J D Nelson MacDonald, two Nova Scotia co-operative and credit union pioneers.
Desjardins, born to impoverished parents in 1854, established North America's first co-operative savings and loan society - a caisse populaire, or "people's bank" - in Lévis, Quebec in 1900 as an alternative to commercial banks that charged exorbitant interest rates to farmers and workers.  His example inspired the creation of credit unions across Canada and the United States and today, Desjardins Group is Canada's sixth largest financial institution.  It is also the largest co-operative organization of any kind in Canada, based on turnover, and the 33rd largest co-operative in the world. To learn more, go to http://www.coopscanada.coop/

§         Again, Atlantic Canadians are encouraged to vote. This time it is for the Bay of Fundy. It is back on the international stage in the New7Wonders of Nature contest.  The Bay of Fundy is best known for the highest tides in the world and has been compared, in marine biodiversity, to the Amazon Rainforest. The Bay is the summer feeding area for half the world's population of endangered North Atlantic Right whales and 12 other whale species.  It is home to the world's most complete fossil record of the "Coal Age" (300 million years ago) as well as the world's oldest reptiles and Canada's oldest dinosaurs. UNESCO recently recognized the upper Bay of Fundy as a Biosphere Reserve and Joggins Fossil Cliffs as a World Heritage Site. Canadians from coast to coast are encouraged to go online to http://votemyfundy.com  to place their vote before July 7, 2009, when the top 77 international sites will be short listed.  Between July 7 and 21, an independent committee will select the top 21 to continue into the fourth and final stage of the campaign. These top 21 sites will also be part of a 2010 New7Wonders world tour bringing tremendous international attention to the selected sites. Phase four is the last voting component of the New7Wonders of Nature campaign until the final announcement is made on who has been selected the New7Wonders of Nature. "We only have a few weeks left in this phase of the contest so every vote is important and interested voters can go to http://votemyfundy.com. We are really excited to be back in the running and we hope we can succeed in getting Canada's Bay of Fundy into the next international phase of the campaign," said Terri McCulloch, manager, Bay of Fundy Tourism Partnership.

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Trends - There is something really wrong with newsgathering when one of your sources is Twitter. But that is nonetheless what CNN is up to these days with their latest assault on Iran . I think this is why I stopped watching most television news shows - journalistic standards have simply gone out the window, replaced with theatre, or the appearance of news. Now, anyone with a Twitter account can send anything to CNN and only God knows what procedures they use to vet the short messages that come through and are published on-screen or quoted as fact by their news anchors. I guess I should not be surprised. Newspapers, radios and televisions news departments are bleeding red ink and no longer able to afford to have real journalists on staff. I think there is a huge role for 'citizen journalists' but I wonder about the critical thinking skills of the newer generations of students and members of the workforce coming out of colleges and universities. We are continuing to add on to the generations of people who were and continue to be spoon fed information that is tailor made and spun to make mindless consumers out of all of us. Think about it: All our questions are answered in 30 second commercials - it has become almost uncivilized to ask questions. I wonder if program cuts to the CBC and Radio-Canada are designed to do just that? Ooops...sorry, I shouldn't have asked that.-Ron Levesque

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Young Co-operators: The Buds on the Co-op Tree - Trevor MacDougall, the Coordinator for the Atlantic Co-operative Youth Leadership (ACYL) submitted the following message for the Young Co-operator section this week: "ACYL would like to congratulate Jacob Henderson of Havelock, New Brunswick for winning the inaugural 'How Co-operative Are You' challenge.  The purpose of the challenge is to have youth who attend ACYL seminars in 2009 accomplish co-operative tasks such as opening an account at a Credit Union or becoming a member at their local Co-op.  For each task accomplished, participants accumulate ballots giving them chance to win one of 4 Apple Ipod Touches. If you would like more information on ACYL or the 'How Co-operative Are You' challenge, please visit our website at  http://www.acyl.coop/  - Erin Hancock

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Co-op Community Bulletin Board


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

§         Nov 19-21, 2009 Canadian Worker Co-op AGM and Conference, Moncton, NB

 

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Contest of the WeekLast week’s contest: The winner was Cathy Darland, Moncton, NB. Answer: 30 campers This week's contest: Many years ago, a cruise liner sank in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The survivors luckily landed on a remote desert island. There was enough food for the 220 people to last three weeks. Six days later a rescue ship appeared, unluckily this ship also sank, leaving an additional 55 people stranded on the island to now share the original rationed food. The food obviously had to be re-rationed, but everyone was now on one-half of the original ration, so how many days in total would the food last for, from the day of the original sinking? Please keep those entries coming! 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 entry to
contest1@nbnet.nb.ca.

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Co-op Cooking – Couscous is pasta made from semolina (a grain). The couscous sold in supermarkets today is very convenient as it is the instant type that has been steamed and dried. I have a friend who introduced me to couscous a few years ago and this is one of her favourite ways to prepare it.        
Couscous with Vegetables
1 3/4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp hot red pepper flakes
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger root
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 lb mushrooms, sliced
1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
1 onion, chopped
1 cup instant, whole wheat couscous
1 cup sweet red pepper, chopped
1 19-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or coriander
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts (optional)
In large saucepan, combine stock, cumin, coriander, pepper flakes, ginger and garlic; bring to a boil. Add mushrooms, carrots and onion. Cover and cook 5 to 7 minutes (tender-crisp). While vegetables are cooking, place couscous in medium bowl, add 1 cup boiling water, cover and let stand 5 minutes. Add red pepper, chickpeas and raisins to the mushroom mixture; cook 2 to 3 minutes (until hot). Taste and add salt and pepper if desired. Stir in parsley or coriander. Fluff couscous with a fork and spoon into bowls.
Top with vegetable mixture including broth. Sprinkle with pine nuts if desired. - Glenna Weagle

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Atlantic Canada Writes, Publishes and Reads –This week, we feature Nimbus Publishing. It produces more than thirty new titles a year on a range of subjects relevant to the Atlantic Provinces- children's picture books and fiction, literary non-fiction, social and cultural history, nature photography, current events, biography, sports, and cultural issues. Nimbus also does distribution for numerous Atlantic publishers, making the company the biggest book distributor on the east coast of Canada. Nimbus has just
republished Sheree Fitch's children's book, http://www.nimbus.ns.ca/Store/CatalogItem/tabid/904/ProductID/5480/Default.
aspx?txtSearch=sleeping+dragons
Sleeping Dragons All Around. An award-winning bestseller first published in 1989, Sleeping Dragons All Around is back to spark the imaginations of a whole new generation. Check it out at http://www.nimbus.ns.ca/.  If you have a favourite book or publishing house (from the East Coast) that you would like to promote, let us know and we will include it. Send your suggestions to news1@nbnet.nb.ca


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Our Readers Write - Tell us what you think. Send news, events and information for the Co-op Community Bulletin Board. Suggest features you think might be beneficial to people reading Co-op Circles. We want this electronic newsletter to serve you (be sure to include your e-mail and phone number). Send your item(s), comments and suggestions to
News1@nbnet.nb.ca

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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.mystfx.ca/coady-library/coop_circles/index.htm 

Next Co-op Circles: Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Rising Tide Collective*- Erin Hancock, Ron Levesque, Brenda MacKinnon,
Maureen MacLean, Glenna Weagle