The co-operative movement has always been about empowering ordinary people to make a real difference and build stronger, more co-operative communities.
And in 2017, we need this vision of people powered services and campaigns more than ever.
That’s why the Co-operative Party has established the Co-operative Action Fund to help support our members and groups organise events, campaigns and other activities that showcase the co-operative difference.
How the fund works
The Co-operative Action Fund supports one-off projects that meet one or more of the following objectives: the project engages and recruits Party members; the project builds awareness of the Party; the project promotes the work of the wider co-operative movement; and the project helps build a legacy of the Party’s centenary in 2017.
Applications are accepted from local branches and networks as well as individual members, so if you have an idea don’t feel that you need to have everyone on board before you apply. As well as financial support, Co-op Party staff are on hand to help with your project and put you in touch with local groups who can help too.
Some of the projects that we have already been approved include:
- A Co-operative Party presence at some of the UK’s biggest community and country shows this summer – we even have a big purple branded marquee that you can use to shelter from the British weather;
- Local campaigns run by members on issues such as the People’s Bus campaign, providing you with all the materials needed to involve your local community and help make a difference;
- Day conferences/schools that bring together members and expert speakers to discuss how co-operative values and principles can help combat the challenges facing our economy;
- Local training and education events for members, officers and activists on topics including digital campaigning, getting a better knowledge of the co-op movement and standing for election;
- Events to help develop and support members in some of our diversity networks including training for our BAME Network and Co-op Party Youth members, a launch event for our Women’s Network and our brand new LGBT+ Co-operators group attending Pride events;
- Support the work of a number of new policy networks bringing together members from across a wider area to discuss and develop Co-operative Party policy and campaigns on issues like housing;
- Run a ‘Be a Councillor’ event to encourage more co-operators to stand for election, and make raise the profile of the work being done by hundreds of Co-operative Councillors across the country.
How to apply
You can use the link below to apply to the Co-operative Action Fund – don’t worry if your project is still in an early stage, we’ll get in touch and may be able to help you develop it further.