Co-operative Retailing System donates $1M to community projects

SASKATOON, Sept. 8, 2015 /CNW/ - Break out the boots, shovels and seeds as 16 projects to protect, beautify and improve community spaces begin with new funding from the Co-operative Retailing System (CRS).

Co-op Community Spaces is a new funding program, launched this past spring, donating $1 million this year to fund projects related to recreation, environmental conservation and urban agriculture across Western Canada.

"The strength and unity of the CRS, which is comprised of Federated Co-operatives Limited and retail co-ops across Western Canada – is what makes this investment in communities possible. The overwhelming response to the program is proof of how much western Canadians care about building their communities," said Vic Huard, Executive Vice-President of Strategy at Federated Co-operatives Limited.

"Just as they always have, co-ops continue to give back to local communities. These shared spaces are an investment in the friends, families and neighbours that are the backbone of these communities."

The program provides between $25,000 and $100,000 in funding for eligible projects. Applications were received between April 1 and May 15 and reviewed for various criteria, including environmental impacts, community need and accessibility.

The Spaces race is on

Four projects have also been selected as finalists and are vying for an additional $25,000 in funding. An online vote Sept. 14–25 will determine the winner.

  • Manitoba Eco-Network (Winnipeg, Man.) – Constructing a community rain garden that will receive, hold and clean water runoff from a large parking lot and improve water quality in the nearby Seine River.
  • Nipawin Business Improvement District (Nipawin, Sask.) – Building a town square on the site of a former gas station.
  • High Park School Parent Advisory League (Stony Plain, Alta.) – Rejuvenating a community playground with safe and reliable equipment to be enjoyed by a new generation of families.
  • Nanaimo Community Gardens Society (Nanaimo, B.C.) – Constructing a new, centrally located greenhouse.

To view the finalists and vote for one—or to view the list of the 16 community projects receiving funding—visit

About Federated Co-operatives Limited and the Co-operative Retailing System

Federated Co-operatives Limited (FCL), based in Saskatoon, is the 43rd largest company in Canada and the largest non-financial co-operative in Canada. FCL is a unique multi-billion dollar wholesaling, manufacturing, marketing and administrative co-operative owned by 210 autonomous retail co-operatives across Western Canada. Together FCL and those local retail co-operatives form the Co-operative Retailing System (CRS). The CRS serves our members and communities with products and services that help build, feed and fuel individuals and communities from Vancouver Island to northwestern Ontario. Our total workforce of 24,500 employees serve 1.6 million active individual members and many more non-member customers at 2,500 retail locations in more than 500 communities. We are a different kind of business – we are locally invested, community-minded and offer lifetime membership benefits including patronage refunds, quality products, quality service and fair prices. More information is available at

SOURCE Federated Co-operatives Limited

For further information: Cameron Zimmer, Communications Manager, Federated Co-operatives Limited, Phone: 306-244-1614, Email:


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