Can you help support Cooperative Maine by becoming an Annual Sustainer?
We need just enough funds for our ambitious future plans. We want to actively educate those who want to know about co-ops and who want to start new co-ops. We want to educate Maine as to why Cooperation is better than Competition. We are working on a speakers’ bureau that is now going to local groups, to infect them with “co-op fever.”
Cooperative Maine is now over eight years old. We have organized several large cooperative conferences in Augusta; a retreat for the working group in Northport; a training for cooperative speakers; several speaking engagements so far, and more to come; annual meetings and tabling for a number of years at the HOPE Festival in Orono; tabling at the Common Ground Country Fair in Unity, representing numerous co-ops from around the state, and speaker presentations at the Fair. As a member of the Data Commons Cooperative, we have an online directory of Maine Cooperatives (see it at: <maine.find.coop> | JOIN & ADD YOUR CO-OP! It’s FREE!). We ensure that the Maine media know about Co-op Month each October ( and C0-op Year as happened in 2012 with the UN International Year of Cooperatives) and provide them with a listing of CO-OP MONTH events. We have established a relationship with Maine Center for Economic Policy (MECEP) where we presented the case for co-ops on “State of The State” cable show, “Cooperatives: Key Players in Local Maine Economies” [AUDIO, here].
We have had substantive meetings with the state housing director about several models of affordable cooperative housing. Senior staff members from the Department of Agriculture have attended our events, and both they and the director of the northeast regional cooperative development resource center, the Cooperative Development Institute (CDI), take part in our monthly phone meetings, where we organize our work. We have met with the leaders of the C.O.O.P. movement in the medical insurance industry. And we look forward to involvement in Resident-Owned Communities (ROCs) as these grow in Maine, helping those previously renting the land beneath their homes become invested in their future.
We have become a statewide voice for co-operation and for co-ops in Maine.
As you may know–we try to do a lot, with a little. We run a very economical ship, and anything you can give will go a long way. We get a lot of ‘in-kind’ contributions from our work group members (almost never cover mileage or food reimbursements, for example; our members donate their time and their cash). We get one small grant some years. We receive some help from the larger co-ops in Maine, for which we are very grateful.
We know it is tough for many groups out there, but we do think we have an “incubator” service to offer new and existing co-ops. Most of our funds have gone to postage, printing, website, and fees for fairs like Common Ground. No pork, no fluff.
We have several different ways you can help:
Mother Jones $ ________ (any amount, whatever you can afford)
Woody Guthrie $ 35
Harriet Tubman $100
Joe Hill $250
The ‘Mondragon Angel’ $500
Please know that no one will be dropped from our mailing lists if you cannot donate. But your donation in any amount will certainly be a strong vote for the work that Co-op Maine does. Right now, we are encouraging your contribution in the form of checks, money orders, or cash, as online card use causes percentage fees for several groups.
We welcome checks and money orders, in any amount, payable to “Co-op Maine” via mail at the address at bottom.
We also gratefully accept tax-deductible contributions! While Cooperative Maine is NOT 501(c)(3), our fiscal sponsor IS:
Deborah Hawkins, Clifton
Ed Democracy, South Portland
Jennifer Hill, Waldo
Paul Sheridan, Northport
Larry Dansinger, Monroe
Jane Livingston, Veazie
Mike Howard, Bangor
C/O: Paul Sheridan
88 Hart Rd.
Northport, ME 04849