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488. Organic Food Co-op Going Solar with Innovative Nonprofit

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Country: Belgium
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The Outer Sunset neighborhood of San Francisco is an oasis. Nestled along the Pacific Ocean is this relaxing surfer town, with a tranquil neighborhood feel that’s unique in the city. For 40 years, a worker-owned cooperative grocery store called Other Avenues has been serving the Outer Sunset community with local, organic foods and sustainable lifestyle […]

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486. Encouraging savings with an innovative on-site deposit service in Benin and Mali

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Coop Name: Desjardins Group N° of Employees: 45,219
City: Lévis N° of Members: 5800000
Country: Canada Year of formation: 1900
Website: http://www.desjardins.com Twitter: Link
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With more than 6 million members and clients, Desjardins Group is the largest cooperative financial group in Canada. As an International Co-operative Alliance member, Desjardins shares the same ideals as thousands of cooperatives around the world. These ideals are expressed through a set of values that defined the cooperative identity since the very start. For more than 40 years, its component Développement international Desjardins (DID) has been working with developing and emerging countries towards the goal of sharing the expertise and experience of Desjardins and helping local communities set up their own financial cooperative networks. DID’s goal is to provide disadvantaged communities around the world with access to secure, diversified financial services that fit their needs. Find stories from Desjardin Group and DID below.

Do you find it hard to save? Now imagine you only earn $1.25 a day and that the banking infrastructure is very limited. This is what many inhabitants of Benin and Mali, West African countries of 10.3 and 14.5 million people respectively, experience every day. Savings being the driving force of independence and development,Développement international Desjardins […]

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485. An Innovative Example of Social Tourism

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Coop Name: Città SO.LA.RE. N° of Employees: 59
City: Padova N° of Members: 71
Country: Italy Year of formation: 1997
Website: http://www.cittasolare.org/
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Città Solare is a social cooperative dedicated to the social and work integration of Italians and immigrants through various activities in three main areas: environmental services, industrial manufacturing and hospitality.  

In Italy, where social cooperatives have long played a key role in filling the gaps left exposed by dwindling public services, the Città Solare is pioneering an innovative form of social tourism, bringing together the disadvantaged in need of training and employment, the marginalized in need of accommodation and tourists and travellers looking for a […]

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484. Promoting Health and Inclusion in an Aging Population

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Coop Name: Japanese Health and Welfare Co-operative Federation (HeW Co-op Japan) N° of Employees: 23
City: Tokyo N° of Members: 2,835,000
Country: Japan Year of formation: 2010
Website: http://www.hew.coop/english/
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“HeW CO-OP JAPAN” is a national federation of health and welfare co-operatives that that deal with health and welfare business. The federation consists of 111 member co-ops and Japanese Consumers’ Co-operative Union (JCCU). They provide networking among cooperatives, knowledge sharing, recruitment and nurturing of medical and welfare staff, publications, joint purchase of pharmaceutical products.

Japan is the world’s oldest country: in 2012, more than 24% of the population were aged 65 or over. This demographic trend is bringing significant public health and welfare challenges, but health cooperatives are leading the way in promoting preventative healthcare and encouraging social inclusion within communities. The Japanese Health and Welfare Co-operative Federation (HeW […]

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483. Bringing Rural Development Through a Multipurpose System

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Coop Name: NH Nonghyup N° of Employees: 109,465
City: Seoul N° of Members: 2,445,120
Country: South Korea Year of formation: 1961
Website: http://www.nonghyup.com
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NH Nonghyup (NACF) is a multipurpose cooperative with four main business divisions: agricultural marketing and supply, livestock marketing and supply, banking and insurance, and the extension service, which offers guidance. Following a restructuring in 2012, the NACF now serves its members and customers through 27 subsidiaries and two affiliate organizations. It represents 2.44 million individual members from 1,165 member cooperatives: more than 80% of all the Korean farmers.

Half a century ago, South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world, with rural life particularly harsh. In the aftermath of the Korean War, devastated communities were suffering from chronic food shortages. A government-led push created an agricultural cooperative system to revive the rural economy, eradicate poverty and improve the socio-economic status […]

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