This year’s theme for national Co-op Month in October is “Cooperatives Build,” highlighting the many ways cooperative businesses demonstrate their shared values and principles. The theme can be used on its own or extended with sub-themes, such as Cooperatives Build Trust; Cooperatives Build Communities; Cooperatives Build Jobs; and Cooperatives Build a Better World.
A Co-op Month toolkit with promotional and educational materials are available online at www.coopmonth.coop. The toolkit includes the Co-op Month logo, posters, updated facts and figures, print and radio public service announcements, a sample press release, sample Co-op Month proclamation, social media tools, co-op success stories, talking points and activity ideas, among other resources.
This is the first year a national Co-op Month planning committee was formed to develop the theme and campaign through CCA.
“Our goal this year was to help strengthen the public image of cooperatives by bringing together professionals with diverse perspectives to create a unified, yet very customizable, Co-op Month theme and campaign,” said Jenny Bernhardt, Co-op Month Committee chair and director of communications for Cooperative Network, a regional association of cooperatives in Minnesota and Wisconsin. “This type of collaboration, volunteerism, and enthusiasm is about as cooperative as you can get.”
The committee included the following national, regional, and local cooperative participation: National Cooperative Business Association, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, National Cooperative Bank, USDA Cooperative Programs, Cooperatives for a Better World, Cooperative Network (Minnesota and Wisconsin), Minnesota Cooperative Education Foundation, Eau Claire Energy Cooperative (Wisconsin), Flint Energies (Georgia), GROWMARK (Illinois), Hanover Co-op Food Stores (Vermont), South Alabama EC (Alabama), TCEC (Oklahoma), and United Farmers Cooperative (Minnesota). The CHS Foundation also provided funding support for the development of this year’s campaign.
Photos used in the campaign feature the following cooperatives: ACE Hardware, CHS Inc., Country Visions Cooperative (Wisconsin), Equal Exchange, Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives, Seward Food Co-op (Minnesota), Seafood Producers Cooperative (Alaska), and Touchstone Energy Cooperatives.