CO-OPPRINCIPLES

Cooperative businesses adhere to seven guiding principles:

1. Voluntary and Open Membership — Cooperatives are voluntary organizations, open to all persons able to use their services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political, or religious discrimination.

2. Democratic Member Control — Cooperatives are democratic organizations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting policies and making decisions. The elected representatives are accountable to the membership. In primary cooperatives, members have equal voting rights (one member, one vote) and cooperatives at other levels are organized in a democratic manner.

3. Members’ Economic Participation — Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their cooperative. At least part of that capital is usually the common property of the cooperative. Members usually receive limited compensation, if any, on capital subscribed as a condition of membership.

Members allocate surpluses for any or all of the following purposes: developing the cooperative, possibly by setting up reserves, part of which at least would be indivisible; benefiting members in proportion to their transactions with the cooperative; and supporting other activities approved by the membership.

4. Autonomy and Independence — Cooperatives are autonomous, self-help organizations controlled by their members. If they enter into agreements with other organizations, including governments, or raise capital from external sources, they do so on terms that ensure democratic control by their members and maintain their cooperative autonomy.

5. Education, Training, and Information — Cooperatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers, and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their cooperatives. They inform the general public, particularly young people and opinion leaders, about the nature and benefits of cooperation.

6. Cooperation Among Cooperatives — Cooperatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the cooperative movement by working together through local, national, regional, and international structures.

7. Concern for Community — While focusing on member needs, cooperatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies accepted by their members.

This information is from National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s website.


 

 

A Trip To The Zoo!

Cooperative Living magazine’s 18th annual Youth Art Contest is now underway and all youthful artists are invited to show us your best work!

The theme for this year’s Youth Art Contest is “A Trip to the Zoo.” Artwork entries should reflect the young artist’s conception of that theme.

The contest is open to all children in kindergarten through fifth grade. There are three winners in each grade category — first, second and third place. All winning entries will be published in the July issue of Cooperative Living.

First-place winners in each category will receive a $25 gift card. The entry judged best in show from all categories will receive a $100 gift card and will be featured on the cover of the July issue.

Deadline for entries is May 4. For entry rules and guidelines, click here: www.co-opliving.com/contests/youth-art/
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Electric co-ops in Virginia made their presence known Jan. 9 at the annual Virginia Agribusiness Council Legislative Appreciation Banquet, traditionally one of the most important events held in conjunction with the yearly kickoff of the General Assembly.

More than 100 electric co-op leaders packed 21 tables as the single largest segment among nearly 1,000 attendees, including representatives from government and the private sector who highlighted the importance of agribusiness to the Virginia economy.

The evening included a reception with samples of Virginia’s Finest products from peanuts to to oysters to sweets to wine, and a buffet-style dinner featuring Virginia products.

Banquet sponsors included Rappahannock Electric Cooperative Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative NOVEC Northern Neck Electric Cooperative Prince George Electric Cooperative A&N Electric Cooperative Central Virginia Electric Cooperative Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative Old Dominion Electric Cooperative and Virginia's Electric Cooperatives

Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Virginia Agribusiness Council Virginia Agribusiness Council
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We love getting feedback from readers!

Susan Gay sent us an email about the Virginia Legislative Guide that was included in her January issue of Cooperative Living magazine. She wrote, "I want to communicate how much we appreciate and enjoy the Cooperative Living magazine each month. We particularly appreciate the January issue with the informative Virginia Legislative Guide. A recent poll indicated that the vast majority of Americans were unable to list the three branches of government, so this is most helpful! Love your recipes too. We are proud to be cooperative members."

Thanks for your letter and comments, Susan! If you have something you'd like to say, feel free to email us at [email protected] To view the Guide, click here: www.co-opliving.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/2020-legislative-guide_rev1-8.pdf
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