Co-operators champions the next generation of Canadian cooperative leaders with newly launched Co-operators Young Leaders Award

7 December 2021

Co-operators Young Leaders Award

ICMIF member Co-operators (Canada) has today announced the launch of the “Co-operators Young Leaders Award”. Created in collaboration with another ICMIF member Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC), the new development and award programme aims to support young Canadian cooperative changemakers who have been identified as future sector leaders. Applications are open now for young cooperators 35 and under.

“Through the Co-operators Young Leaders Award, we are celebrating the innovation, passion, and potential that young people are bringing to the Canadian cooperative movement,” says Shawna Peddle, Director of Co-operators Community Funds at Co-operators. “By spotlighting and developing young cooperative leaders, we also signal to youth outside the sector that there are meaningful opportunities here today and in the future.”

Successful recipients will receive CAD 1,000 and participate in a virtual “Co-operators Leadership Academy”, providing young leaders a foundation on which to build confidence, knowledge and exposure to cooperative values and principles. Participants will attend networking and skill-building events, attend virtual tours, participate in leadership sessions, and events with cooperative leaders nationally. The first cohort of award recipients will be announced in spring 2022.

“Cooperative enterprises help keep our communities and our economy robust and resilient.” says Daniel Brunette, Director of Advocacy and Partnerships for Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada, and a member of the Selection Committee. “By training the next generation of cooperators and spotlighting their leadership potential, we will build a stronger, more diverse and inclusive future.”

The application is open to young people 18-35 years old who are meaningfully involved in the cooperatives and mutuals sector in Canada through employment, education or volunteering. The deadline to apply is 30 January 30 2022. Submissions will be reviewed by a selection committee with representatives from Co-operators and CMC. Applicants will be evaluated on their dedication and contributions to the cooperative movement and their interest in the learning opportunities offered through the Leadership Academy.

The Co-operators Young Leaders Award is part of the Pathways to Employability (P2E) initiative of the Co-operators Community Funds (CCF). In 2020, CCF continued its longstanding cooperative sector support by making CAD 1 million in capital available through the launch of its Co-op Impact Program and announced a CAD 220,000 COVID-19 Co-operative Assistance Fund to provide provincial cooperative associations with access to financial support. By supporting cooperatives and providing solutions to challenges facing the sector, Co-operators contributes to the well-being of Canadian communities through the services these co-ops offer.

For member-only strategic content on the cooperative/mutual insurance sector, ICMIF members have exclusive access to a range of online resources through the ICMIF Knowledge Hub.

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