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Hazel Corcoran receives the William J. Nelson ACE Award.

May 24, 2016 —An energetic leader within the Canadian and American co-operative movement will be the first recipient of the William J. Nelson Contribution to ACE Award recognizing those who add significant value to the Association of Cooperative Educators (ACE). Hazel Corcoran of Calgary, the executive director of the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation, new board member of The Cooperators and vice president of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada, the pan-Canadian association representing co-operatives and credit unions, will be honoured at an awards ceremony at the University of Calgary on June 2. “Hazel pushed the envelope for us, and helped our organizations reach as many people as possible in Alberta,” says Sarah Pike, program chair for the 2016 conference between ACE and the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation being held in Calgary. “She was especially effective in connecting with leaders who would contribute to the discussion of Energizing Communities: Co-operatives Nurturing…

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CWCF seeking Administration and Bookkeeping Support Staffperson, Kentville, NS

Nov. 10, 2015: CWCF seeks to fill a temporary RRSP Administration & Bookkeeping Support position, available immediately. The position will be part-time (16 hrs/ week) until the end of December, and will be full-time (35 hrs/ week) from January 1 – March 31, 2016. After March, 2016 the position will again be part-time, hours to be determined. Administrator_Bookkeeper job ad_fnl

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CWCF adopts Climate Change Statement in Lead-Up to UN Climate Conference in Paris, updated 11-2018

CWCF has an updated, Nov. 2018 draft of its Climate Change Statement.  In sum, CWCF calls for urgent international action that includes the following elements:  Commitment to 100% renewable future by 2050, Mutual Support, Equity and self-responsibility, Fair Compensation, the Common Good, and Openness and Transparency.  CWCF encourages its members and partners to adopt a similar position.  See attached.  Many thanks to the Leap Manifesto group for encouraging CWCF to draft this update! CWCF-statement-on-climate-change_UPDATED_27_11_2018   NOTE: old version, from the fall of 2015:  CWCF called for an agreement in Paris that included these same elements. 150716_CWCF statement on climate change_final

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Canada’s worker co-ops mourn the loss of co-op pioneer Mark Goldblatt

Canada’s worker co-operative movement is deeply saddened by the loss of CWCF’s Past President Mark Goldblatt, who died on Tuesday, February 3rd of an apparent heart attack. “Mark’s contributions to building the worker co-operative movement in Canada were instrumental in building the movement, and its national Federation,” said Hazel Corcoran, Executive Director of the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation (CWCF). His outstanding qualities were his vision, intellect, dedication to co-operation, generosity, humility, sense of humour and fun, integrity, commitment, perseverance and inability to be uncaring or mean to anyone, in other words a sort of radical kindness. Mark Goldblatt’s personal engagement with co-operatives reflects the dynamism and innovation that have characterized the co-operative movement in Canada throughout its history. Although we have lost a great co-op champion, Mark planted many seeds which have grown and are growing into lasting co-operative organizations. Mark, as a member of Sound Advice Worker Co-op, joined the Board…

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Co-op World Music Project

A Melody of Co-operation Around the World: CICOPA World Music Project, a Legacy of the International Year of Co-ops Now Moving into the Co-operative Decade, by Hazel Corcoran, Executive Director, Canadian Worker Co-op Federation A CICOPA World Music Project resolution was passed in November 2011 in Cancun.  For the background, see: http://www.cicopa.coop/A-melody-of-cooperation-around-the.html Music selections, primarily from Canada, have been submitted.  A small committee has reviewed the submissions.  The committee members are: Rebecca Kemble (US), and Donna Balkan (Communications Manager, Canadian Co-op Association), Mark Goldblatt (Past President, CWCF), Colin MacDougall (Past director, CWCF) and myself, Hazel Corcoran (all from Canada). We are very pleased to announce that the CICOPA World Music Collection is made up of 4 songs, as follows. We hope that you will find these songs as inspirational as we do! 1. “Together” by Konfekoop – Basque Cooperatives Confederation, 4:54 minutes.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hV6cy11itX4&list=UUXT-g-EXpbL8tl_t6rFTiqg&index=1&feature=plcp 2. “The Big Idea Song”, by Greg O’Neill, of…

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CWCF commits $250,000 to the National Fund

CWCF Contributes $250,000 to National Co-op Investment Fund At its AGM on November 10th, 2012, CWCF approved a recommendation from its Board of Directors to pledge an investment of $250,000, contributed over a three-year period to the National Co-op Investment Fund, lead by CCA. This includes $175,000 from the $500,000 in CWCF’s Tenacity Works Fund, and $75,000 from an anonymous investor.  This pledge is an expression of faith in the NCIF as a sector-driven co-op development Fund supporting the expansion of new and existing co-ops (including worker co-ops, and with some focus on business successions), with leadership by people who understand the co-operative development process. The CWCF sees this fund as a vehicle for all of the co-op sector to share in the success of the co-op movement, through investing in new and existing co-ops.  The Fund will get started once the co-op sector has pledged a minimum of $20…

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An Equal Exchange Story: When a founding member gets pushed out

Paper posted on March 6, 2011 was prepared for the Babson-Equal Exchange Cooperative Curriculum titled ‘The Worker Cooperative Life Cycle’ by John R. Whitman Ph.D. This is an academic- style paper that explored whether the Cook and Burress’ theory (2009) of the five phases of a co-operative fit the life cycle of Equal Exchange. The paper can be found at: http://cooperativecurriculum.wikispaces.com/file/view/The+Worker+Cooperative+Life+Cycle-Whitman.pdf As a non-academic I was more interested in the story of founding a worker co-operative, how democratic the worker co-operative is, and how a founding member can be forced out of a worker co-operative. John R. Whitman interviewed the founders of Equal Exchange in the paper. The following are excerpts from the paper in regards to this. Equal Exchange was founded from its founders compelling motivation to use their existing food warehouse co-operative skills to advocate on behalf of the interests of developing country farmers. The challenge faced by founders Jonathan…

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