Why join a co-operative?

There are many reasons to join a co-operative, including:
1. Co-ops are guided by seven co-operative principles: voluntary and open membership, democratic member control, member economic participation, autonomy and independence, education, training and information, co-operation among co-operatives ( a business strategy), and concern for community.
2. Co-operative members own the co-op equally, and you can be as active as you choose. You have a voice and a vote. You can also help define the direction of the co-op, and are welcome at Board of Director meetings. You can serve on co-op working groups to enhance the co-operative’s profile and energy conservation strategies in the community.
3. Within our co-operative, the emphasis is on small and local rather than on huge and conglomerate initiatives. You’re likely to see friends and associates at our meetings and information sessions. As an owner, you support local community resiliency efforts to increase community bargaining power in the marketplace, in purchasing or marketing.
4. You become part of a values-based organization that puts people ahead of profit. As a member, you help plan and share in the financial success of the organization and invest in a business that is a locally owned, democratically controlled enterprise. Co-ops exist to provide benefits to members and the community versus being strictly about profit.
Adapted from http://faresharecoop.org/membership/why-join-a-co-op/