Cooperative Community Fund
Co+opportunity Announces 2018 “Give Where You Live” Grant Recipients
CULVER CITY (October 24, 2018) - After receiving a record number of applications, Co+opportunity has awarded the 2018 Co+opportunity Cooperative Community Fund (CCF) Grant to two admirable Los Angeles organizations: SoLA Food Co-op and GrowGood. The grants were presented to the organizations at Co+opportunity’s Owner Annual Meeting in Culver City on October 21, 2018.
Co+opportunity’s CCF, in conjunction with the Twin Pines Cooperative Foundation, serves as a means for co-op owners and shoppers to make meaningful donations to organizations within the community. Each October, Co+opportunity awards a grant from the interest earned on the fund to a Los Angeles area organization working on issues relating to sustainable agriculture and organic food, hunger and social issues, environmental protection and cooperatives. Last year’s recipient of the CCF Grant was the UCLA Student Food Collective, a student-owned, cooperatively run market and cafe.
SoLA Food Co-op is a growing organization working to provide a source for natural, organic, non-GMO food in South Los Angeles by opening a full-service grocery store. Aiming to empower the community through shared ownership, educational opportunities, and social engagement, SoLA Food Co-op is in the beginning phases of forming itself into a viable cooperatively organized business.
Accepting the award on behalf of SoLA were SoLA Founder, Board Member and Vice President Bahni Turpin, Board President Mikaela Randolph, and Board Member Les Koll. “We are so thrilled to be presented with this opportunity,” Mikaela said, “The Give Where You Live grant will help send our board to the Up & Coming conference for start-up food co-ops in the spring, where we hope to strengthen our collective knowledge of the developmental steps of growing the co-op to a brick and mortar store.”
GrowGood is a non-profit organization that has partnered with The Salvation Army to transform and maintain a 1.5 acre parcel of land into a no-till, regenerative urban farm that provides thousands of pounds of fresh, organic produce to the Bell Homeless Shelter. The farm also provides employment and therapeutic opportunities to those transitioning from homelessness at the Shelter through culinary training and life skills classes.
Ryley Schlachter, Commercial Manager for GrowGood, accepted the award at Co+opportunity’s Owner Annual Meeting. “This grant will help us to equip our greenhouse and launch our social enterprise of selling our farm’s produce to restaurants and other purveyors,” Ryley said, adding that locally grown microgreens and produce are in high demand by local chefs.
“The recipients of this year’s grants embody the mission and values of Co+opportunity through their investment in thoughtful and community-based approaches to improving the lives of our neighbors in LA County. Co+opportunity is proud to support our sister-cooperative and our farming neighbors, and looks forward to further collaborations in the future,” remarked Lena Tito, Marketing Director at Co+opportunity.
Learn more about SoLA Food Co-op and GrowGood at the links below.
Cooperative Community Fund (CCF)
Application for 2019 will be available in December.
The Cooperative Community Fund (CCF) also known as “Give Where You Live” is an endowment fund, established by a group of cooperatives to enable community giving. The fund- interest earned each year on the principal- is donated by each sponsoring co-op to nonprofits and cooperatives in their community as cash grants.
While the co-op donates goods and funds to a wide variety of local non-profit organizations throughout the year, we also seek opportunities to increase the CCF.
YOU can take part in this community giving by:
Making a monetary donation of any amount at any register at the co-op
Mailing a check to the co-op marked: CCF Donation
Owners can donate their fiscal year-end Refunds at the register or by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. When emailing, state that you would like to donate the Refund to the CCF. Include your full name and the phone number on the account.
Examples of previous CCF recipients are:
UCLA's Student Food Co-op - a student-owned, cooperatively run market & café that educates students about food systems, trains students to manage a sustainable business, and provides a warm, welcoming space where people can come to learn and be part of a community.
Its mission: provide fresh, delicious, sustainable food for the UCLA community, celebrate the artisic and cultural vibrancy of our campus, and bring people together." Read more here!
SÜPRMARKT - a low cost organic grocery servicing low income communities in LA. It operates weekly, providing 100% organic produce to make great health and healing available to the communities which need it most.
Ocean Park Community Center - an independent, community-supported organization in which staff, volunteers and clients work with mutual respect to address the effects of poverty, abuse, neglect and discrimination. The agency's programs are designed to remove barriers to access the resources individuals need to ensure their survival, end their victimization and improve their quality of life.
Seeds to Plate Program - an academically integrated, standards-based middle school garden program. It promotes a healthy lifestyle while providing hands-on garden experiences for students, families and staff at Mark Twain Middle School, LAUSD.
School on Wheels, Inc. - provides academic tutoring to children living in shelters, motels, cars, group foster homes and on the streets in Southern California. They provide homeless students stability in a time of stress and transition, and help them achieve educational success so that they may break the cycle of homelessness and poverty.