The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives has been unveiled

The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives has been unveiled

The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives is “sustainable consumption and production of goods and services“. It gives an opportunity for co-operatives to show how they run successful businesses while respecting our natural environment and the resources it offers. The theme was unveiled in the presence of the President of the International Co-operative Alliance, Ariel Guarco, at the event “Cooperatives: Developing people-focused strategies to end poverty”. This was organized by the Committee for the Promotion and Advancement of Cooperatives (COPAC) in the framework of the 56th session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD56) in New York.

“We believe that co-operatives are an important and efficient instrument to fight poverty. Co-operatives bring people together in a democratic and equal way. They allow people to take control of their economic future and, because they are not owned by shareholders, the economic and social benefits of their activity stay in the communities where they are established. These are two very important characteristics of cooperatives especially when it comes to fighting poverty”, said Mr Guarco. He mentioned several co-operative experiences and presented the latest results of the online platform called Coops for 2030, including  examples of pledges that co-operatives around the world are taking to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). There have been 300 pledges from 100 co-operatives in 40 countries so far.

With “sustainable consumption and production of goods and services” as theme in mind, co-operators from around the world are invited to participate in selecting the #CoopsDay slogan. Until noon on the 8th of February (UTC−5), Twitter users can vote for one of three potential slogans:

1. Sustainable societies through co-operation

2. Choose a co-op: for a greener planet, for a common future, for a better world

3. Choose co-op: Together for the planet

Want to help pick the #CoopsDay slogan? Cast your vote here

The 2018 International Day of Cooperatives will be celebrated on the 7th of July.

Why this theme?

Co-operatives have sustainability in their DNA, with concern for community as the seventh of their guiding principles.

The 2018 International Day of Co-operatives theme is aligned with that of the 2018 High-level Political Forum for Sustainable Development (HLPF): “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies”. During the HLPF in July, UN Member States will review progress towards achieving the following Sustainable Development Goals: 6 (clean water and sanitation), 7 (clean and affordable energy), 11 (sustainable cities and communities), 12 (responsible consumption and production) and 15 (life on land).

Co-operatives have two centuries’ experience building sustainable and resilient societies. Among the examples, agricultural co-operatives work to maintain the longevity of the land where they grow crops through sustainable farming practices. Consumer co-operatives support sustainable sourcing for their products and educate consumers about responsible consumption. Housing co-operatives help ensure safe dwellings. Cooperative banks contribute to stability thanks to their proximity to their clients and provide access to finance at local level and are widespread even in remote areas. Utility co-operatives are engaged in the transition to cleaner electricity and rural access to energy and water. Worker and social co-operatives in a number of sectors like health, communications, tourism, etc. aim to provide goods and services in an efficient, planet-friendly way, while creating long-term, sustainable jobs.

Through #CoopsDay, local and global policymakers can learn how co-operatives contribute to more sustainable and resilient societies and work towards including co-operatives in policy processes related to sustainability issues.

For further information contact:

Leire Luengo

Director of Communications

International Co-operative Alliance
Tel: + 32 2 285 00 76