Introduction to Co-operatives and Co-operative Development
History and Benefits
Aware of the significance of Rochdale, Desjardins, the Antigonish movement and other key leaders and movements in Canada.
Aware of some of the central components of the Mondragon co-operative system in Spain, as well as the co-operative system in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy, and the role that these co-operatives play in their countries and world.
Gain a basic knowledge of community economics, and the role that co-ops may play in a community’s economy.
Be able to explain the basic concepts of Social Capital and its value as a measure of quality of life. The participant will also demonstrate understanding of the inherent social capital value of co-operatives
Co-op Identity and Principles
Understand the history and origins of the statement of co-op values and how they are manifested in some forms of co-operatives.
Understand and reflect upon key elements of the Statement of Co-operative Identity, Values and Principles
Understand the various approaches to participatory democracy and decision-making.
Module 2 - $750
Roles, Rights, and Responsibilities in Co-operatives, Co-operative Organizations, and Federations
Co-operative Roles, Rights & Responsibilities
Understand the roles, rights and responsibilities in a co-operative.
Aware of and understand the roles of the regional, national, and international apex multi-sectoral and federations of co-operative organizations and how these organizations can support co-operative development.
Understand the role of governance and management and the importance of accountability and transparency for co-op governance and management.
Be supportive to a group in their incorporation of the co-op and offer templates and examples when questions arise, bringing a familiarity with business law and legal language to the task.
Demonstrate how to modify by-laws
Understand the policy development process, including issue identification, issue analysis, data collection, development of solutions, and performance measurement. S/he will also be able to model policies and procedures that appropriately reflect the context within which the co-op is working.
Module 3 - $750
The Co-operative Structure - Its Versatility and Challenges
Steps and Challenges in the Co-op Development Process
Knowledgeable of the steps in the co-operative development process and types of co-operatives.
Aware of how to adapt it to various situations.
Aware of some of the similarities and differences between the co-operative development model and business development models used for privately owned businesses.
Aware of the challenges of the co-operative development model and how to address these.
The Co-op Structure, Its Versatility and Adapting the Co-op Development Process to Situation
Aware of the co-op structure for different types of co-operatives and circumstances.
Aware of the benefits and challenges of the co-operative development model and how to adapt it to different types of co-ops and circumstances.
Have a deeper understanding of the role of members, the board of directors, and the role and forms of capital in various types of co-operatives, including housing co-ops, worker co-ops.
Able to provide basic information on incorporated and unincorporated co-op, for profit and non-profit and charitable co-operatives.
Be able to outline the factors that will determine whether workers are employees or not, and to provide support in designing the relationship such that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will support the desired form.
Be able to carry out, or facilitate the carrying out of, a group readiness assessment for various types of co-operatives.
Gain an initial understanding of co-operative succession/conversions.
Module 4 - $750
Co-operative Developer’s Leadership
Co-op Developer Skills and Professional Ethic
Explain the use of confidentiality agreements.
Communicate the basics of privacy legislation in plain language.
Can distinguish between your ethical standards and those of the group.
Understand what constitutes “professional advice” and knowing when you should recommend to the client to seek the professional advice of a lawyer, accountant, etc.
Outline the procedures necessary to smoothly engage outside expertise.
Education and Problem-Solving Skills
Understand the basics of adult education theory and praxis and their application in co-operative development.
Be comfortable using adult education theory and techniques to analyze and address challenges co-operative members and/or leadership may experience.
To be familiar with how to receive and offer feedback for the development leadership and facilitation skills.
Analyze the role of presentations in practical development scenarios.
Facilitate participatory learning through using engaging presentations.
Module 5 - $750
Co-operative Finances, Capitalization and Financial Planning
Co-operative Finances –Tracking the Money
Have the capacity to assist in implementing a basic accounting system and a bookkeeping system by analyzing the operations of a co-op in order to produce required reports and ensure a clear audit trail.
Develop a familiarity with the options for computerized booking systems.
Be able to explain basic financial reports and their use in monitoring the co-op’s progress.
Demonstrate an understanding of different management reporting options and the ways to communicate this information to the board and to members.
Capitalization of Co-ops and Accounting
Achieve an understanding of the different services accountants may offer and be aware of the implications for a developing co-op.
Understand the difference between redeemable and permanent capital and par and non par value shares. Understand members’ rights and entitlements (member equity). Understand taxation differences between par and non-par value shares (possibility of capital gain).
Understand the approaches to surplus distribution appropriate to different situations, as well as their taxation implications. Understand the income tax reporting requirements and be able to assist a co-op to determine the taxes, duties and fees that apply to their circumstances.
Aware of co-op sector sources of financial support for co-op development.
Module 6 - $750
Co-operative Monitoring and Reporting - Accounting and Audits
Financial Computer Modelling and Audits
Understand and develop a financial model for a co-operative using integrated spreadsheets, showing projected income and expense, assets and liabilities, and cash flow.
Understand the different levels of audits accountants offer and be able to recommend the appropriate level to co-ops in various contexts.
Planning for Sustainability and Accountability
Understand sustainability planning process and its use in various planning stages of co-operative development.
Be able to understand and explain sustainable goals (financial, social and environmental) and being accountable for monitoring the co-op’s progress on these goals.
Module 7 - $750
Decision-making and Dealing with Conflicts in Co-operatives
Diagnostic and Problem-Solving Skills
Learn to negotiate in clear statements, without defensiveness, and will be well prepared to give respect to others' opinions using the underlying principles of “win-win negotiations” (as described in the book "Getting to Yes").
Be able to summarize key issues and interests in a multi-stakeholder process.
Creative Conflict and Mediation to Address Conflict
Understand the process of using controversy as a source of generating creative solutions that work to build consensus around desired outcomes.
Understand the basic process for a mediation and its application in co-operatives.
Module 8 - $750
Leadership and Sustaining Co-operatives’ Value
Understand the strengths of good membership engagement and have at hand a few examples of member engagement activities or policies.
Understand the importance of watching the cash flow, how it comes in, what is used for and how it goes out in sustaining a co-operative over the long haul.
Demonstrate understanding of the administration of Contribution Agreements.
Networks and Resource and Your Leadership
Develop, organize and share information regarding your networks of experts and support
Reflect on your learnings over the whole CoopZone Co-operative Development training program and your experience and what are your future learning goals.