CWCF Conference 2018

CONFERENCE of the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation and CoopZone

Theme: Co-operation in the Changing World of Work  

November 1 – 3, 2018, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Humphry Inn & Suites

Hashtag: #cwcf2018

Thanks to all who attended! Powerpoint presentations from the conference are posted here.

Conference AGM materials as well as the draft strategic plan can be found here.

Conference Press Release

Conference Program 

Time Wednesday,  October 31
5:pm at the Museum

6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the Forks for dinner

Canadian Museum for Human Rights has a $5 admission on Wednesday evenings, starting at 5pm (admission to the exhibit “Mandela: Struggle for Freedom” is an extra $5”).

A meet-up at The Common, The Forks 6pm to 9pm. The Forks is a lovely, central meeting space, and The Common features locally owned food vendors including a social enterprise.

Time Thursday, November 1
8:00 am

8:15 am


Registration starts

9:00 am to 4:00 pm

All-day Management Intensives

Lunch on your own

Intensive #1 – Financial Management of your Worker Co-op

Interested in the financial health of your co-operative? Dive into this full day intensive to increase your understanding of financial statements, build a financial health dashboard for your co-operative, and discuss real-world topics that worker co-operatives face.

The session topics will build on financial basics covered in the CWCF financial basics webinar.

  • Key Performance Indicators and cash flow
  • Distributing patronage returns
  • Setting and changing member buy-in amounts
  • Divisible and indivisible reserves and how to set them

With Russ Christianson

Facilitated by Reba Plummer

Including a presentation from The Co-operators.

Intensive #2 – CoopZone

CoopZone hosted Intensive day.

Facilitated by Vera Goussaert, Executive Director, Manitoba Co-operative Association

The following topics will be covered:

  1. New Generation Co-ops with Pascal Billard, Co-founder and General Manager of SOL-AIR Consultants and Kristen Wittman, Taylor McCaffrey LLP
  2. Where is Co-operative Developer Training Going in Canada? with Eric Tusz-King, Course Director, CoopZone Training Program, and Ben Prunty, Executive Director, CoopZone
  3. An Exploration of Replication, Scale-Ability, and Ambitious Strategies for Movement Building with Ben Prunty, Executive Director, CoopZone

Including a presentation from The Co-operators.

4:30 – 6:30pm Solidarity Happy Hour, location Carbone Coal Fired Pizza at 260 St. Mary Avenue / Alternative vegetarian/vegan Affinity Vegetarian Garden, at 100-208 Edmonton St.
6:30 to 8:30pm

Doors open / refreshments at 6:30 Program at 7:00

Evening  Keynote Presentation:  Millennium Library, Carol Shields Auditorium(in partnership with MCA, CDEM, CCEDNet, Assiniboine Credit Union and SEED Winnipeg Inc.) Winnipeg welcome from Vera Goussaert, Executive Director, Manitoba Co-operative Association

Evening Keynote Speakers:

  • Rob Wesseling, President and CEO, The Co-operators and
  • Molly McCracken, Director, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – Manitoba Office.
  • Pablo Benson-Silva, New York City Network of Worker Cooperatives, and US FWC Board member
  • Facilitated by Carinna Rosales, Co-Director, SEED Winnipeg Inc.

Focussed on how the world of work is changing which could provide opportunities for the Worker Co-op movement. Noting changes such as increasing income inequality, automation and climate change, the theme seeks to explore the role of co-operatives in providing work in the context of these extreme forms of disruption.

Friday,  November 2
8:00 am
8:15 am
Registration starts
9:00 to 10:10 am Welcome, from CWCF (Reba Plummer), CoopZone (Pascal Billard), and Winnipeg Welcome from Jean-Michel Beaudry Director of Community Economic Development, CDEM- Economic Development Council for Manitoba Bilingual Municipalities.
Introduction to the Theme and Ice-Breaking Activity
10:10 to 10:30 am Networking Break
10:30 am to 12:25 pm Forum #1: CWCF’s Strategic Plan: to Strengthen & Grow the Worker Co-op Movement, with clear action plan and implementation presented.  With Russ Christianson, Reba Plummer and Hazel Corcoran
12:25 to 12:30 pm Group photo
12:30 to 1:15 pm Lunch (included)
1:15 to 1:55 pm Movement Break/walk
1:55 to 3:25 pm Workshops:
A1) Member Peer Coaching:

Peer Coaching Groups using a highly focused process among 4-6 people who use coaching to help each other address real, current, important problems and opportunities.

Facilitated by Eric Tusz-King and Kaye Grant

A2) Co-operatives in Indigenous Communities, and the services of Cooperatives First.  By Trista Pewapisconias and Audra Krueger A3) Canadian Co-operative Investment Fund (CCIF) and other ways to finance your worker co-op. With Bill Dinsdale, Sr. Community Account Manager at Assiniboine Credit Union, Christina Baker, Director of Community Lending for New Market Funds speaking about the  CCIF and Marty Frost with Human Ventures: Cooperative and Community-Based Business Development.

Facilitated by Peter Hough

3:25 to 3:45 pm Networking Break
3:40  to 3:55 pm Mark Goldblatt Merit Award Presentation –  Presented by Reba Plummer and Hazel Corcoran
3:45 to 5:00 pm CWCF AGM Part 1: Reports

CWCF AGM Part 2: Financial Statements and Budget

B2) Social Enterprise workshop, including collaboration / overlap with co-ops with Marty Donkervoort, Social Entrepreneur and University Instructor, Sarah Leeson-Klym, Manitoba Regional Director, CCEDNet and Carinna Rosales, Co-Director, SEED Winnipeg Inc.
6:15-10:30 pm Mix and Mingle Networking Party hosted by Winnipeg Worker Co-ops, off-site at XCues Café and Lounge at 551 Sargent Avenue (transportation options provided).  Games and entertainment include: pool, shuffleboard, foosball, ping pong and possibly video/board game options; a button-making activity as well.
Saturday,  November 3
8:00 am
8:15 am
Registration starts
9:00 to 9:30 CWCF AGM Part 3: Nominations, director elections and resolutions
9:30 to 9:50 am Co-op Showcase:  Co-op Ignite session

1.       Rick Proven, Sun Certified Builders Co-op

2.       Annie-Julie Gauvin and Marc Henri CDR Acadie

3.       Owen Ardel – Urbane Cyclist

9:50 to 10:10 am Networking Break
10:10 to 11:10 am Forum Topic #2:  The New Realities of Management – with focus on people – facilitated panel with co-ops (before lunch), & then have break-out groups after lunch.   Three table topics:

1) Worker Co-op organizational structure and decision making. What is the role of the Board, the management and the workers?  Presenters from Shift Delivery and Just Us! Coffee

2) Performance Feedback: mechanisms for worker co-ops including peer-to-peer and inter-personal issues. Presenters from Urbane Cyclist and La Siembra

3) Remote working.  Presenter from Sustainability Solutions Group and from a Developer

Facilitated by Omar Yaqub, Alif Partners Worker Co-op

11:10 am to 12:10 pm Lunch  / Board reorganization meeting
12:10 to 2:10 pm Forum Topic #2:  Continued
2:10 to 2:45 pm Facilitated wrap-up

Confirmed Sponsors

Major Sponsors:

Other Sponsors: