COMMITMENT TO COMMUNITY PROGRAM IS EXPANDING!
Cooperative Principle 7, “Concern for Community”
Goal: Increase the number of Co-op Shareholders who volunteer in our community.
Co-ops are all about community! As a co-op with over 8,000 members, we have the opportunity to make a difference in our community in all sorts of ways…and we want to do more to assist local organizations working to improve the lives of our neighbors. After many years, it is time to announce a change to our Commitment to Community program, which will allow us to deepen our impact on the community that sustains us.
What is the Commitment to Community Program?
The Commitment to Community program rewards Shareholders who volunteer at a Windham County nonprofit with a 5% discount. For every 2 hours you volunteer, you get a month’s worth of discount. Up until now, we supported volunteer hours pretty much anywhere in Windham County, but we limited it to a maximum of eight hours (four months’ worth) per year.
What’s new in 2021?
Starting now, Shareholders can receive up to 24 hours (twelve months) of their Shareholder discount by volunteering with a Commitment to Community Partner organization. We will also allow you to bank up to an additional 12 hours each year. This means that in total, you can earn up to 36 hours per year (a year and a half of discounts!) by volunteering in the community.
This change does have some immediate implications. You will no longer self-track your hours at Shareholder Services, nor volunteer at any non-partner organization starting September 1, 2021. Until then, we will continue to honor both the new system and the old one. Please let us know if you have any questions. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and or questions.
What is a Commitment to Community Partner Organization?
These are Windham County organizations whose missions align well with the Co-op’s, and that have signed up to partner with us. They’ve agreed to track and report Co-op shareholders’ volunteer hours to the Co-op.
Here’s a list of our Commitment to Community Partner Organizations:
- Groundworks Collaborative/Foodworks: Groundworks Collaborative provides ongoing support to families and individuals facing a full continuum of housing and food insecurities in the greater Brattleboro area.
- The Vermont Food Bank: Our mission is to gather and share quality food and nurture partnerships so that no one in Vermont will go hungry.
- Contact Kate Steward, KSTEWARD@VTFOODBANK.ORG, (802)-498-8323, or learn more about volunteering on their website.
- Volunteer opportunities include but are not limited to: sorting food, harvesting/gleaning, bagging produce.
- SUSU commUNITY Farm: The SUSU commUNITY Farm is an Afro Indigenous stewarded farm and land based healing center in Southern Vermont that elevates Vermont’s land and foodways.
- Edible Brattleboro: Their mission is to improve accessibility to healthy food by transforming spaces in and around town into edible landscapes, interplanting greens, herbs and fruits among the ornamentals.
- For volunteer opportunities contact Marilyn, email@example.com.
- Volunteer opportunities include but are not limited to: weeding, watering gardens, planting, helping move soil, compost to sites, operate the Share the Harvest stand….
- Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT): The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont promotes organic practices to build an economically viable, ecologically sound and socially just Vermont agricultural system that benefits all living things.
- For volunteer opportunities in Windham County contact Livy,
- Volunteer opportunities: Stretch doughs, chop veggies & top pizzas to serve at events on farms statewide with the NOFA wood-fired pizza oven.
What if the organization I volunteer with isn’t on the Commitment to Community Partner list?
Let us know, and we’ll reach out to them. You can find us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, ask them to apply! The form to become a C to C Partner is here.
Why are we doing this?
This change will allow us to leverage the energy and talents of our 8,000+ shareholders throughout Windham County and allow us to more fully embody Cooperative Principle 7 – Concern for Community.
I represent a Windham County non-profit in need of volunteer support. How can we become a Commitment to Community Partner?
It’s simple! Just fill out an application. You’ll need to establish a point of contact at your organization to track and report volunteer hours directly to Shareholder Services on a monthly basis.
How do I sign up for volunteer hours?
- View the most current list of our Commitment to Community Partner organizations above.
- Select an organization and reach out to their contact person or preferred method of signing up for a volunteer shift.
- Sign up with the organization you choose, show up for the volunteer shift, and follow any training and or volunteer information they may provide.
- Give your name and Co-op Shareholder # to the organization’s point of contact so they can alert us once your volunteer work has been done.