A new scout patch program developed by Cabot Creamery Cooperative in collaboration with NCBA CLUSA is designed to help groom the next generation of cooperators in the U.S.
By introducing boys and girls to all things co-op, the Co-ops for Community Scout Patch Program will help fill a gap in cooperative education and awareness at a young age. While completing activities to earn the Co-ops for Community Scout Patch, scouts will learn the benefits of the co-op business model, be inspired by its values and principles, build leadership skills and support community connections.
The Co-ops for Community Program Activity Booklet provides parents and group leaders with a range of engaging, age-appropriate learning activities, such as matching co-op brand names with their products, visiting a local co-op and even an opportunity for scouts to create their own co-op business. Once a group has completed its required activities, each participant is eligible to receive a Co-ops for Community Patch.
A pilot of the Co-ops for Community Scout Patch Program will launch in North Carolina in October 2016 through a collaboration between the Cooperative Council of North Carolina (CCNC) and the Girl Scouts of the North Carolina Coastal Pines.
“We are always focused on growing the next generation of cooperators and we’re delighted to have this patch program as a powerful tool in our cooperative education and awareness toolbox,” Ed Townley, President & CEO of Cabot Creamery Cooperative; and Judy Ziewacz, President & CEO of NCBA CLUSA, said in a letter distributed with the Co-ops for Community toolkit.
“We look forward to these young people joining us as members, employees and even organizers of cooperatives,” Townley and Ziewacz added.
While many cooperative already engage local youth through groups such as Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of America, 4-H programs and Boys and Girls Clubs of America, the Co-ops for Community Patch Program is a great entry point for newer cooperatives wishing to expand their local impact.