co-ops and community
How Cooperatives can help us Meet Local Community Needs
Many Maine communities are threatened by the economic and demographic challenges we outline above. Cooperatives have played a strong role in stabilizing communities and preserving legacy businesses, supporting farmers and fishers, providing social services, and retaining affordable housing. Later in this report we look at ways that Maine cooperatives can connect to the global economy, but first we want to look at ways cooperatives can sell to their own neighbors and increase the percentage of food, goods, and services consumed in Maine that are produced by businesses owned in Maine. Additionally, we will examine how cooperative housing can address shortages in affordable housing, and how employee ownership conversion can help thousands of baby boomer business owners retire comfortably while sustaining the jobs, access to goods and services, and local ownership our communities rely on.