45th Birthday Community Mural Art Project

| Community

To commemorate our 45th Birthday we are asking the community to paint a few large-scale murals on the Co-op property during the summer months. One of the murals will be for kids, the others for all ages. We welcome all interested community members, Shareholders, and artists of all ages. No previous experience necessary as our esteemed Shareholder and mural artist Terry will help support anyone interested through this process. Requested themes will either be food-, agriculture-, or cooperative-related activities, and should include the BFC logo, name, or mascot. Our first meeting will be held in the Community Room on April 24th from 4-5:30pm. We will supply food, paper, and pencils to begin sketching ideas. We will set future meetings based on the group that attends.

White Fragility Book Group

| Community

A three-part pop-up book group will be meeting in the Community Room from noon to 1:30 on Tuesdays in March, on the 10th, 17th, and 24th, to discuss White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo. The discussions will be facilitated by Wesley Pittman.  

Support Orphanages in Haiti

| Community, Food For Thought

Ten years ago this month, just two days after an earthquake devastated the Caribbean island of Haiti, Co-op member Sheila Humphreys and then-deli clerk Mariam Diallo began a conversation that led to a decade-long connection between our community and Foyer Evangelique Orphanage (OFEU) in Haiti.

Letter to our Co-op Community

Over the course of the past few years, the town of Brattleboro has seen an unfortunate rise in addiction and poverty, affecting many of our lives.  We at the Co-op have experienced this first-hand, as addiction has deeply affected our staff, family, and friends.  The experience of walking in downtown Brattleboro is not unlike that in many other towns and cities.  From Greenfield to Burlington to Bennington we are seeing and feeling the same effects of an economic, political, and health care system that is broken, which makes folks turn to the street.  In recent months, we as a Co-op have tried to show leadership when we can as a response to what is presenting itself here in our town.  People who are struggling and in need of support are often overcome by demons in their search for ways to cope.  We at the Co-op feel a need to try and be a part of positive change that can be a way to shift what is happening here and all across the country.  As our Ends Policies state, we are and believe we must be a “welcoming community marketplace,” one that is built on the Cooperative Principle “Concern for Community.”  We are proud of our actions thus far, and think that it is important to be publicly involved in all of the initiatives that are underway in our community. We were not among the merchants who authored the anonymous open letter that The Commons printed on May 29th.* Although we understand and appreciate the work that this group, like many others, is pursuing to come up with solutions, we think that public dialogue with clear authorship is important to better further a community-wide initiative.  As we reflect upon our role as an anchor downtown merchant with thousands of employees and customers impacted by the current reality, we feel it is important to reiterate the projects we are involved with, and inform about internal actions we are taking.