The process of opening a cooperative market is complex because it involves more than simply opening a store. It involves building a community of like-minded individuals who are committed to a common goal. It involves a process of visualizing that common goal, mobilizing a team of energized volunteers and dedicated member-owners, and capitalizing the project through a successful Capital Campaign before finally realizing the goal: a member-owned cooperative market.
If we were simply opening a grocery store together, we would approach banks and lending institutions, offer some sort of collateral, and fund our store. But the cooperative model is different. Your commitment, and the commitment of your 823 fellow member-owners, is the collateral we present to the bank.
Call it commitment as collateral, strength in numbers, community as security, alliance as an asset, unity as warranty. Call it what you will, it is a monumental step in capitalizing the project and realizing the Co-op.
The most direct reflection of that commitment is the progress of our ongoing Capital Campaign. Since last week, we have raised $85,000, bringing our Capital Campaign total to date to $125,000. Thank you to those who have supported the Campaign through the purchase of Preferred Shares and the offering of Member Loans. Your commitment brings us one step closer to realizing the goal. Together, we can capitalize, realize, and someday soon…patronize the East Aurora Cooperative Market.