Co-op Week 2018 Summary

Published on October 26, 2018 by Will McGlynn

National Co-op Week, a collaborative campaign that celebrates co-ops right across Canada – was certainly full of big announcements and the coming together of minds that explored how to solve problems together.

In addition to 13 of our members joining us at the ACCA’s Gathering of Alberta Co-operatives conference, there was even more going on around the province.

It was great to see one of our newest members – Local Investing YYC – jointly announce the Community Economic Development Corporation (CEDC) tax credit program at an official launch event. The event in Calgary was held at Momentum, who we closely work with to place co-operatives at the heart of community development in cow-town. These 2 organizations also had the chance to share the stage with Economic Development and Trade Minister Deron Bilous, further raising the awareness of co-operatives right here in Alberta.

Co-op week also afforded an opportunity to recognize a truly outstanding co-operator, whose years of service and dedication has significantly helped and transformed the sector here in Alberta since his involvement started back in the 1970s. Whether it was his active involvement in the launch of a rural broadband service in CCI Wireless or being a founding director of his local Lac La Biche Gas Co-op, to his long standing service on the North Parkland Power REA board of directors and innovation in contributing to the technology to remotely read gas meters – Harvey Yoder was certainly a co-operator worthy of ACCA’s Visionary Leader award during Co-op Week.

Harvey Yoder Receives His Visionary Leadership Award

During Co-op week, and fresh on the heels of Canadians voting credit unions as the best of class in Customer Service in the IPSOS Financial Excellence Awards, thousands of Credit Unions across the province also celebrated International Credit Union Day with a flurry of activity. Another ACCA member in Credit Union Central of Alberta announced a new shared marketing campaign and the day also saw Shell’s 6,000 strong credit union rebrand as ‘SPARK The Energy Credit Union’.

“This historic day is a well-suited day for an event like this. Credit unions remain an important and valuable option for Albertans looking for a financial institution”

Alberta Minister of Finance, the Honourable Joe Ceci at the SPARK launch.

It was not only Minister Bilous and Ceci shouting about the benefits of the Co-operative sector – the ACCA ran a 3-part education series to MLA’s on the benefit of co-operatives, with over a third of the 87 elected officials actively engaging to learn more about the sector here in Alberta. There were shout outs from the Agriculture Minister, the honourable Oneil Carlier as well as sharing of posts on twitter from MLAs such as Brandy Payne (Calgary-Acadia) and Annie McKitrick (Sherwood Park).

Brandy Payne was one of the MLA’s to get involved in National Co-op Week

All in all, Co-op Week 2018 provided fantastic opportunities to shine the spotlight on co-operatives, but let’s make sure we can collectively shine this spotlight 365 days a year!