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Nascent Co-operation, The Time Is Ripe!

January 23, 2012

Nascent has a two-fold meaning. Part reflecting a budding beginning; a coming into existence, while part refers to signs of future potential.

Technically community cooperation principles have been around since pre-industrial revolution and the co-operative movement has been around since the 18th century. Nevertheless, the term nascent hinges well to a movement rising once again.

As growing discontent of the injustices of a capitalist economy rise, niche alternatives to the status quo, consumer lifestyle and business methods are bursting from pockets around the US and world over. Growing numbers are appreciating connection to nature, stewarding the environment, eating pure foods that bolster health rather than processed, chemical laden, health depleting food-like quasi-edibles. If I may generalize some more, people are also seeking to increase purpose and meaning within individual and social lives. We are breaking from the promoted ‘all about me and money’ mentality and branching towards co-operative health, happiness, and prosperity.

The co-operative movement offers a model capable of reaching these goals–bridging social and economic prosperity, while operating in all sectors of the economy. Co-operatives have defined principles, embrace knowledge sharing, education, mutual responsibility, connecting local business, and community economic development.

The time is ripe for action, as the United Nations has declared 2012 the International Year of Co-operatives. In support of this effort, co-operative acumen are working to promote awareness, practice, and increased influence worldwide this year more than ever before.

Open your world to a positive future by taking action in your local community to support these efforts. What can you do? The choices are numerous, and come with great benefit and nourishment.

It’s as easy as seeking out a co-operative business in your locale and supporting them by becoming a member or simply giving them friendly business. By this simple act you will be supporting business owned and operated by local people sharing and promoting a positive vision through sustainable practice. While your money supports co-operatives, you are fostering the development of your community and increasing democratic participation, as co-operatives often have programs to educate and give back to the community they serve.

Your dollars will be kept in the local loop, spreading their benefit at home rather than going to distant CEOs and headquarters. Since co-ops are democratically run by their members–one member, one vote–members get a taste of living democracy, where their voice is heard and the difference their vote makes is recognized. This practice tends to open people to the voting system, getting more peoplevoting locally, state-wide, and nationally.

Bonus: by supporting a local co-op, or any locally owned and operated business if a co-operative does not exist where you are (tips on starting a worker co-operative), you will surely be getting high quality, likely locally sourced, pure and healthy delectables of diverse form.

If you functionally flow day to day with an Eco-Logical based mentality and food philosophy of an enviro-gastronome, you will certainly be swimming in content through co-operative participation and support. If you consider yourself interested, are part of the enviro-foodie classification to any degree, or are new to the concept, search out your local co-operative all the same and stroll in with positivity!

Keep it local, be well.

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