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A global marque for co-operatives has been unveiled by the International Co-operative Alliance.
The co-operative logo, designed by a British co-operative, has been launched at the Alliance’s Global Conference in Cape Town.
Calverts, the London-based creative co-operative, was commissioned in March by the ICA to create the common identity. Building on the momentum created by the International Year of Co-operatives and the widespread use of the logo, the ICA has led on this initiative as part of its Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade initiative.
Read more by Anthony Murray:
International Day of Co-operatives
The International Day of Co-operatives is celebrated annually on the first Saturday of July.
Message of the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) - 90th ICA International Co-operative Day - 18th UN International Day of Co-operatives - 7th July 2012 - English
The aim of the day is to increase awareness of co-operatives and promote the movement's successes and ideals of international solidarity, economic efficiency, equality, and world peace.
ICA first celebrated the International Day in 1923. The International Day is now run in partnership with the UN and the UN asks all member governments to participate in the celebrations each year.
The International Day has a different theme each year. Themes in recent years have included ‘Youth, the future of co-operative enterprise’ in 2011 and ‘Co-operative enterprise empowers women’ in 2010. Co-operatives around the world celebrate the Day in many different ways, seeking to gain press and publicity at a local and national level.
The ICA wants to make the International Day in 2012 something that we will all remember – one in which one billion co-operators can get involved in order to raise public awareness about the co-operative business model. The theme for the International Day 2012 is the same as the International Year of Co-operatives: "Co-operative enterprises build a better world".
UN International Day of Co-operatives, 7 July 2012 "Cooperative enterprises build a better world" - "Les coopératives, des entreprises pour un monde meilleur" - "Las empresas cooperativas ayudan a construir un mundo mejor".
This year's theme links to the observance of the United Nations International Year of Cooperatives. It seeks to encourage the growth and establishment of cooperatives all over the world, and to recognize the actions of cooperatives in helping to achieve internationally agreed upon development goals, such as the Millennium Development Goals. How to celebrate the International Day?
Co-operatives around the world celebrate the Day in many different ways. Below are examples of some of the activities organised by co-operatives around the world:
• The messages of the ICA and United Nations are translated into local languages and widely disseminated to co-operators, media, and government officials at all levels.
• Co-operatives use the media to create awareness on their movements and contributions.
• Co-operative Fairs, exhibits, contests, and campaigns are held.
• Meetings with government officials, United Nations agencies and other partner organisations are held.
• Co-operatives partner with community agencies to champion economic, environmental, social and health challenges.
• Cultural events are sponsored - theatre, concerts, etc.
International Day resources and events
There are resources available for your co-operative events from the Australian IYC 2012 web site:
Rio+20 Acknowledges Co-ops
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Rio declaration acknowledges co-operatives
Rio+20 document affirms that co-operatives are key for sustainable development
Friday, 22 June 2012
Today the co-operative movement made history with nations’ signing the Rio+20 document which included a strong affirmation that co-operatives are important for agricultural development, jobs and for social development and poverty reduction.
Rio+20 is the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD), following 20 years after the original 1992‘Earth Summit’ in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Rio+20 was attended by 190 countries in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from June 20-22, 2012. The focus of the conference was to advance a “green economy” and also focus attention on creating a framework for moving forward on sustainable development.
Commenting on this important milestone, Dame Pauline Green, President of the International Co-operative Alliance (the international organization that represents co-operatives in 100 countries around the world) said: “Members and supporters of co-operatives have long known - co-ops help lift people out of poverty, advance gender equality, give back to the community and address head on the critical issues of sustainable development. What nations did in Rio today was to state that case in writing.”
Betsy Dribben is the ICA Director of Policy. Having participated in the UN Rio negotiations since January 2012, Dribben noted time and again ministers and ambassadors told her that in their countries - rich or poor - cooperatives were important. She added that while negotiations were often slow and sometimes punctuated by frustration on every side, at the end of the day they could all agree ‘that co-operatives build a better world’. “Just as we’ve been saying over and over again in this UN International Year of Co-operatives - this values based business model can really make good things happen. Now country leaders at the Rio signing have made it clear ‘they finally get it.’”
She also noted that from the start of negotiations the Brazilian government was committed to making sure that co-operatives were a focus as a key element in advancing sustainable development. “We’re grateful that even when the going got tough Brazil stood tall on pressing colleague countries to keep co-operatives wording in the text.” She added that the Brazilian co-operative movement underscores just how much co-operatives can do to improve the quality of life.
Dribben also paid tribute to the Canadian delegation which began the negotiations in January at the UN in New York City by asking that support for “agricultural cooperatives” be included in the text and followed through on that commitment all the way to Rio. “They did the right thing on our wording with patience and resolve” she added.
Reporters: the key text elements follow
Co-operatives appear 3 times in the document.
- We acknowledge the role of cooperatives and microenterprises in contributing to social inclusion and poverty reduction in particular in developing countries.
- We resolve by [2020 / 2030] to sustainably increase agricultural production and productivity, including through improving the function of markets and international support mechanisms, particularly for the developing countries, with a view to increasing public and private investment in agriculture and rural development. Key areas for investment and support include: sustainable agricultural practices; rural infrastructure, storage capacities and related technologies to significantly reduce post-harvest and other food losses and waste throughout the food cycle; research and development on sustainable agricultural technologies; developing strong agricultural cooperatives and value chains; and strengthening urban-rural linkages.
- We are encouraged by government initiatives to create jobs, for poor people in restoring and managing natural resources and ecosystems, and we encourage the private sector to contribute to decent work and green job creation for both women and men, and particularly for the youth, including through partnerships with small and medium enterprises as well as cooperatives.
– END –
For further information contact:
Betsy Dribben – Director of Policy
Nicola Kelly – Director of Communications
NOTES TO EDITOR
- The International Co-operative Alliance is the global voice for the values-based business model of the co-operative, uniting co-operatives worldwide and providing a forum for knowledge and concerted action.
ICA was established by co-operatives in 1895. In 1946 the ICA became one of the first three non-governmental organisations to be accorded "consultative status" with the United Nations. Membership is growing and the ICA currently has over 270 members in 100 countries active in all sectors of the economy: agriculture/ forestry, banking/credit unions, consumer, health, insurance, workers, fisheries, housing, transport and tourism. ICA members represent around one billion people worldwide, and employ 100 million people.
- Co-operatives are successful values based businesses owned by their members. Whether they are customers, employees or residents, the members get an equal say in the business and a share of the profits.
- The United Nations has declared 2012 the International Year of Co-operatives. With its theme of ‘co-operative enterprises build a better world’, the Year is an opportunity to raise public awareness of how co-operatives are successful values based businesses owned by their members.
The UKs Second Largest Co-operative
The John Lewis Partnership and Waitrose is the 2nd largest co-operative in the UK with an annual turnover of A$13 billion and over 75,000 employees. Peter Cox is visiting Australia in 2012 and he has written a book about the John Lewis Partnership and Waitrose - Spedan's Partnership: The Story of John Lewis and Waitrose (2010). Peter joined John Lewis in 1968 and retired from Waitrose in 2003 as its IT director. On Tuesday 24 January 2012 Peter Cox gave an overview of the John Lewis story and provide insights into its model for employee ownershi to an audience of 50 people.
. The event was presented by Employee Share Ownership Australia & New Zealand, Greenwoods & Freehills and Co-operatives Victoria.
Participant Graeme Charles reports: "At the conclusion of his talk, Peter took questions from the obviously interested audience. The questions generally centred around issues of employee arrangements, such as executive salary levels, which Peter explained are vastly different to those being enjoyed in organisations of a different culture to JLP. Salaries are capped via the Partnership's Constitution."
"Some people appeared to have difficulty grasping the exact nature of the organisation's structure. Peter explained that it is a 'partnership' in which all employees become a partner from day one of their employment and as a partner each employee receives an annual bonus, which last year was set at 16% of their salary."
"The question of capital-raising was asked. The partnership does not raise capital from its partners. It relies on borrowing from the market-place and setting aside reserves from its annual profit, which of course is done before the employee bonus is declared."
"Peter's final question from the audience, asked 'If the JLP model has been so successful, for so long, why hasn't it been widely replicated in the UK?' His explanation was that there are not many people like the JLP founder, who basically endowed his established business to his employees, to be held in trust for them in perpetuity."
Graeme reports that copies of Peter's book about the JLP were available for sale and these were all eagerly snapped-up at the conclusion of his address.
At 8:30 p.m on 29 December ABC1 showed the first of four programs on the People's Supermarket in the UK. The programs were first broadcast on Channel 4 in the UK in early 2011. The People's Supermarket was established in May 2010. Is the People's Supermarket a food co-operative or is it something else?
On behalf of all States and Territories, on 8 November 2011 NSW Fair Trading invited submissions on reporting requirements for small co-operatives. Submissions closed on the 7 December 2011. Seven submissions were received from - NSW Department of Education and training, the Co-operative Federation of Victoria Ltd, the Australian Accounting Standards Board, Co-operatives WA, Mark Snell and the Sydney Live Steam Locomotive Society Co-operative Ltd.