94th ICD Cooperatives: the power to act for a sustainable future

94th ICA International Co-operative Day
22nd UN International Day of Co-operatives
2nd July 2016

"Co-operative: the power to act for a sustainable future"

On July 2nd, the International Day of Co-operatives will celebrate how co-operative enterprises contribute to the achievement of the United Nations’ seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which set an ambitious agenda for 2030 to end poverty, combat climate change and ensure equality and inclusion for all.

UN 17 goals for sustainable development

As values- and principles-based enterprises that exist to meet the needs of people, co-operatives are well-placed partners to deliver the SDGs, which address hunger, food security, gender equality, inclusive growth and sustainable production and consumption, among other issues.

The SDGs mirror many of the objectives laid out in the Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade, a global strategy for and by co-operatives to become the acknowledged leaders in economic, social and environmental sustainability, the model preferred by people and the fasting growing form of enterprise.

When adopting the SDGs in September 2015, UN Member States recognised in the text the role co-operatives play as actors in the private sector.

Given this important acknowledgement of co-operatives in global policy, and the relevance of the SDGs to the work that co-operatives do every day, the Alliance invites co-operators around the world to engage in the implementation of the SDGs, by making a pledge to participate in the Co-ops for 2030 platform, an Alliance campaign to unite co-operatives around the world in building a sustainable future – together. The platform will allow co-operatives to learn about the SDGs, set targets to help achieve the SDGs, track their progress and see how other co-operatives are engaging.

With co-operatives so entrenched in the communities that they serve, this is a rare opportunity to collaborate on a global level to advance shared interests.

We all know that co-operatives have the power to act for a sustainable future. Let’s share that power with the world.

Pledge today at! And, share on Twitter and Facebook how your co-operative is celebrating the 2016 International Day - use the hashtag #coopsday!


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Examples of co-operative contributions to sustainable development

• Co-operatives in Japan generate employment for 5.4 million people, nearly double the amount of unemployed citizens.

• In Kenya, the main type of back office loan offered by savings and credit cooperative societies is for school fees, allowing members to educate their children.

• Since 2003, Coop Italy’s Buon Fine project has recovered still edible, unsold food projects and donated them to charities and people in need. Through the programme, Coop Italy has reduced food waste by 3,544 metric tons and assisted around 150,000 people in need.

• In Argentina, the Cooperativa Agropecuaria y Artesanal Unión Quebrada y Valles Ltda (Cauqeva) helps farmers cultivate, process and market indigenous potatoes, and operates a museum and small restaurant to promote traditional livelihoods.

ICA 2016 message.pdf

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