Bettering your co-op education in Nelson

June is fast approaching, officially marking the middle of 2012, the International Year of Co-operatives.

June is fast approaching, officially marking the middle of 2012, the International Year of Co-operatives.

This year the International Year of Co-operatives has been declared by the United Nations to highlight the strengths of the co-operative business model in furthering socioeconomic development around the world.

In localizing the impact of these strengths, the Upper Columbia Co-operative Council invites community leaders to apply to participate in the acclaimed Simon Fraser University certificate program for Community Economic Development coming to the Kootenays, beginning in July. The deadline to apply is Thursday, May 31.

The Upper Columbia Co-operative Council has partnered with Selkirk College and SFU to host the highly regarded Community Economic Development program, which has broad appeal to both economic development officers and community organizers, and features eight, two-day courses which lead participants to explore the models and methods for building sustainable and resilient local economies.

Courses include Applications in Co-op Development, Community-Based Venture Development, Social Finance, and Social Enterprise.

The courses will be offered in Selkirk College’s Nelson and Castlegar campuses, between July 2012 and July 2013.

“We are really pleased to partner with Selkirk College and SFU to bring this unique program to the area for the first time,” said Zoë Creighton, coordinator of the Upper Columbia Co-op Council. “The courses will allow for timely discussions around increasing community control of our local economies and developing more meaningful employment in our region.”

More information on the program, as well as details on applications, courses, instructors and bursaries, at or call Nicole Chaland at 250-686-1167, or via email at


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