News Releases

Stratford co-operative receives support and funding from The Co-operators

Jul 6, 2012
7:00am

STRATFORD, ON, July 6, 2012 /CNW/ - On the eve of the International Day of Co-operatives, an emerging Stratford co-op received a $7,000 grant to support its development. Your Local Market Co-op received funding to further develop its business and community reach. It is one of 16 grants announced provided through The Co-operators Foundation Co-operative Development Program (CDP), which supports emerging and expanding Canadian co-operatives.

Your Local Market Co-op is a workers' co-operative food store that opened last year. Its goal is to promote healthy, affordable local food and help develop a sustainable food system, while providing sustainable employment. The market offers produce, meat, dairy and packaged products from local farmers and food producers. It also has a bakery and kitchen where fresh bread and food items are made for sale onsite. The grant will support the co-operative's promotional initiatives.

"In our first year of business we have been impressed by the support of the co-operative community. One of the weaknesses of our tight budget has been the inability to properly advertise, but thanks to The Co-operators this is about to change for year two. With the grant for marketing and promotions, The Co-operators has enabled us to get the word out and will help increase our customer base," said Heather Walker, Your Local Market Co-op. "This grant will surely give us a boost towards becoming a financially self-reliant business. We are thankful for the generosity of the co-operative community and the great people at The Co-operators for helping our new business succeed."

Stratford Co-operators insurance agency Peter Maranger & Associates Inc. has been a long-time supporter of Your Local Market Co-op. Last fall the co-op decided to set-up FoodBike, a bicycle delivery service in the Stratford area for the summer of 2012. They began fundraising to purchase a specially fitted delivery bike for the program. The agency stepped in and donated $2,500 to cover the cost of the bicycle.

"We liked the idea and felt that it would be a great opportunity to show our support for their initiative by purchasing the bicycle. This year, and hopefully for many to come, Stratford residents will see The Co-operators bike making its way around town, delivering fresh and local organic food," explained Peter Maranger, Financial Advisor. "This is a perfect example of 'win-win-win' as this start up co-op gets a boost and provides summer employment, customers enjoy better, healthier food products delivered right to their door, and we get to support a fellow co-operative."

Tomorrow marks the International Day of Co-operatives where co-operatives across the country will be raising awareness and celebrating the impact co-operatives make in Canada and around the world.

Over the past 20 years, The Co-operators has provided $1,720,397 in grants and investments to developing Canadian co-operatives through The Co-operators Foundation Co-operative Development Program.

About The Co-operators:
The Co-operators Group Limited is a Canadian-owned co-operative with more than $38 billion in assets under administration. Through its group of companies it offers home, auto, life, group, travel, commercial and farm insurance, as well as investment products. The Co-operators is well known for its community involvement and its commitment to sustainability. The Co-operators is listed among the 50 Best Employers in Canada. As a proud member and supporter of the co-operative sector, The Co-operators is pleased to celebrate 2012: The International Year of Co-operatives. For more information visit www.cooperators.ca.

For further information:

Peter Maranger
The Co-operators
519-272-2667 

Heather Walker
Your Local Market Co-op
519-814-2667


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