ORGANIZATIONS:

CALIFORNIA CENTER FOR COOPERATIVE DEVELOPMENT

Overview: The California Center for Cooperative Development (CCCD) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that supports cooperatives in a broad range of fields, from housing to agriculture and energy. Much of its staff and board members are cooperatives experts who were previously employed by the University of California at Davis Center for Cooperatives, which closed down in 2004.

Programs:

  • Seminars to assist cooperative directors
  • Tecnical assistance to cooperatives (referrals, fee for service, or via grant funding)
  • Collection and analysis of data, technical knowledge, best practices
  • Outreach programs for public education

Resources:

NATIONAL COOPERATIVE BUSINESS ASSOCIATION

Overview: The NCBA is a membership association for cooperatives in all sectors. It is itself organized as a cooperative. The NCBA engages advocacy at the federal level, provides ways for cooperatives to connect to each other, and provides education and development services.

Resources:

  • No specifics on food cooperatives or legal issues, but a good platform from which to link to other resources.
  • Check out the “About Coops” tab, which includes overviews on the various types of cooperatives, including:

US FEDERATION OF WORKER COOPERATIVES

Overview: The US Federation of Worker Cooperatives is a national organization that supports worker cooperatives. Its members consist of cooperatives from all sectors and of all sizes, as well as other “democratic workplaces” and organizations that support worker coops.

 Resources:

  • For FAQs about worker cooperatives, in English and Spanish: http://www.usworker.coop/aboutworkercoops
  • The Worker Coop Reading Room contains a small number of case studies and analyses of worker coops: http://www.usworker.coop/readingroom
  • Resources and Contacts for: federations, support and ally organizations, financial institutions, funders, and lenders, academic centers, media and blogs (http://www.usworker.coop/resources)
  • The Document Library can be searched by keyword or by clicking on categories, such as type of document, language, workplace industry, workplace size, and workplace state. The sample bylaws are a good resource that is hard to find online. Documents regarding food cooperatives are scarce. Read the tips on how to use the document library. (http://www.usworker.coop/doclib)
  • The How-Tos and Help section contains few but very substantial resources, including a 79-page Worker Cooperative Toolbox that goes into depth on the financial aspects of running a cooperative. (http://www.usworker.coop/howtos)

TEAMWORKS COOPERATIVE NETWORK

Overview: The network consists of two cooperatives (one for house cleaning and another for landscape maintenance). It’s “development” branch provides technical assistance to cooperatives from Sacred Heart Community Service (a non profit). The TeamWorks Capital Fund provides finance for Teamworks cooperatives.

NETWORK OF BAY AREA WORKER COOPERATIVES (NOBAWC)

The Network of Bay Area Worker Cooperatives or NoBAWC (pronounced “no boss”) is a grassroots organization of democratic workplaces dedicated to building workplace democracy in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. NoBAWC is dedicated to helping build the worker cooperative movement in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. To realize this, they:

  1. Provide support for our members. This includes maintaining and sharing information relevant to worker cooperatives, providing technical and organizational assistance, offering joint marketing and promotional services, developing group benefits, improving access to financial resources, strengthening ties between worker cooperatives and developing relationships with other segments of the cooperative/labor community.
  2. Develop new worker cooperatives and offer assistance to those developing worker cooperatives.
  3. Promote worker cooperatives in our community. This includes developing community awareness of worker cooperatives as sources of meaningful employment, providers of quality goods and services and viable alternatives to conventionally owned and managed businesses.

CDS CONSULTING CO-OP

CDS Consulting Co-op provides services at cost to cooperatives of all shapes and sizes, and has been especially active in assisting food cooperatives. The areas of focus include: expansion and growth, improving retail operations, leadership development and governance, and starting a food co-op. CDS is itself organized as a shared services cooperative.  

1) Check out the CDS Consulting Co-op Webinars – these are some of the best resources on legal, organization, and management issues on the web.

2) Check out the CDS Newsletter database. It contains short reports with additional links to specialized topics about running cooperatives. The topics are extremely diverse, from re-writing bylaws to efficient store design and case studies of cooperatives.

3) The Resource Database is mostly free of charge. It includes:

  • Articles from Cooperative Grocer magazine and other publications (List of Cooperative Grocer articles)
  • Links to other organizations supporting cooperatives (List of links)
  • Toolboxes“: two are free (Patronage Dividend Primer, and Member Loan Toolbox). The others are available for sale. These are documents created by CDS consultants to provide comprehensive primers on specific topics. (List of toolboxes)

COOPERATIVE DEVELOPMENT & SUPPORT ORGANIZATIONS

Please find a semi-comprehensive list of local, state, national, and international organizations supporting the development of cooperative enterprises.

It’s easier to read if you open up the pdf below in a new window. Last updated February 2017. 

Download the “Cooperative Development & Support Orgs” list as a PDF here.

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