CDF Awarded $200,000 USDA Grant for Home Care Cooperative Development


The U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded the Cooperative Development Foundation a $200,000 Rural Cooperative Development Grant to support the foundation’s work in developing home care cooperatives in the United States.

“This substantial grant affirms USDA’s commitment to CDF’s leadership in home care cooperative development. The funds will further CDF’s pioneering work to support and expand worker-owned home care cooperatives in the United States,” said Rich Larochelle, chair of CDF’s Board of Directors. This is the sixth time since 2011 that CDF has received the grant from USDA.

CDF will use a portion of the $200,000 RCDG grant to host the second annual National Cooperative Home Care Conference in Dulles, Virginia from November 6 – 9, 2017. Funds from the grant will support professionally-facilitated planning and training sessions at the conference for home care cooperative developers and workers.

(CDF provides scholarships for registration, travel and lodging for home care cooperative members who need assistance to attend the conference.)

CDF will also use the RCDG grant funds to develop a case study of an exemplary startup to be shared within the industry, study a specialized lending tool for home care cooperatives, provide direct technical assistance to developing and existing home care cooperatives, act as a resource for cooperatives through education and outreach, and serve as a guide for home care cooperative developers and boards that need support in sound governance and strategic planning.

“Cooperatives offer the potential to provide quality jobs, wages and care in America’s fastest-growing occupation,” said Leslie Mead, CDF’s executive director. “CDF wants to support home care cooperative growth and expansion in the United States because it’s the best solution for a growing national problem.”

CDF’s goal is to develop research and resources to make cooperatives a dominant force in the home care industry. Toward that end—and in partnership with Capital Impact Partners and the AARP Foundation—CDF has invested in research to build a replicable model for home care cooperative development. Results from the research, which is being conducted by the ICA group, will be available later this fall.

The Cooperative Development Foundation promotes community economic and social development through cooperatives. CDF is a thought leader in the use of cooperatives to create resilient communities, including the housing and care needs of seniors. Through its funds, fiscal sponsorships and fundraising, CDF provides grants and loans that foster cooperative development domestically and abroad. CDF’s Cooperative Hall of Fame recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding cooperative leaders at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. each year.

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