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$180 000 co-op mission


BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

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Government has contracted a Canadian entity to help develop Barbados’ non-financal cooperative sector.

Last week, the Canadian Cooperative Association said it was hired via the Ministry of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development to carry out a 20 month technical assistance consultancy worth about $180 000.

“The Government of Barbados has invited CCA to help its cooperatives Department retool its capacity to grow and develop the non-financial cooperative sector in Barbados.

The consultancy will work with the Cooperative Department to create and implement a strategic plan for growth and to provide training to department staff in becoming co-operative developers,” the organisation said.

“For the first time, CCA is using webinars to orient and train participants from the four countries.

The consultancy seeks to support the growth of the Cooperatives Department to a Government agency that can effectively promote the non-financial co-operative sector in Barbados,” it added.

CGA said it would “use a fully participatory methodology with a ‘training cooperative developers’ approach for the activities of this assignment.

“Cooperative principles call for the full participation of members in the decision-making of a cooperative; the same principle applies here”.

“Such a participatory process will be employed to identify training needs within the Co-operatives Department; in the design of training programmes; in “training co-operative trainers”; to craft an appropriate marketing plan; and other deliverables as appropriate and as identified by the Cooperatives Department and CCA.”

Barbados already has links with the CCA, with current consul general in Toronto Haynesley Benn having worked with the organisation. Benn has already identified his desire to cooperate with the CCA during his tenure.

“As a trained cooperator and having worked with the Canadian Cooperative Association; having got a fairly wide knowledge and background in cooperatives and credit unions, I want to focus a lot of my energy on getting some help for the non-financial cooperatives in Barbados,” he said after being appointed last year.

“Canada has been extremely supportive of farmers’ organisations in the region.” (SC)

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