We are full of gratitude this season. We are part of a community that cares and takes action to make things better. We witness steady progress on this important process of bringing a grocery store to Oshkosh that is owned by members (and can thereby do even more good for Oshkosh and beyond). And we know it is because of the support of people like you – people who have purchased memberships, people who have recruited others, people who have donated items to support our mini-member drives and more. We are grateful.
We are also EXCITED – excited to announce that we’ve reached our Nifty 250 goal! It’s so wonderful to reach out and say, “Help us get to this next step” and watch the memberships come in to get there. Each of these mini-goals is important as we move to taking the next major steps in our timeline.
As we move towards 300 Member-Owners we will be in touch with the financial experts who specialize in Co-operative start-ups like ours, to help conduct the crucial financial analysis. This may not sound important, but this step will ready us to develop our business plan and have the data we need to meet with lenders and others down the road as we take one more step towards getting the doors open.
If you are interested in having brochures to share at your workplace or with friends, let us know and we can be sure to get those to you! Just email us at OshkoshFoodCoop@gmail.com and let us know how to get them to you! (We can deliver!) And if you have a Health and Wellness program at your place of employment, let us know – we can meet with them to discuss a Lunch and Learn, see if membership to the OFC can become a benefit, or other ways to include the OFC in your path to being healthy.
As we close out 2015, we are in the throes of planning our annual retreat. This is a time that we set aside to check in with the larger work plan we have set to ensure we are planning not just for the now, but also for the next big steps along the way. Last year’s retreat plan resulted in planning our Co-op Grow-Op and Co-opalooza and those events garnered over 60 new members. We are very excited to have Jacqueline Hannah, Food Co-op Development Specialist with the Food Co-op Initiative (FCI) joining us for our retreat day. We will be focusing on building membership, engaging our membership (we know you want to be involved in the project in different ways!), and doing another timeline for the next 1-2 years.
Did you know that you can give the gift of the Co-op to another person this holiday season? It’s true – what a great gift to invest in the community as well as wow your recipient with such a thoughtful gesture! You can set it up on our website – purchase a membership and enter your recipient’s name and information. If you want it to be a surprise or have us email you the membership certificate so you can gift-wrap it and put a bow on top, email us before you purchase the membership, so we know it will be a gift/surprise and we can be in touch about the specifics! Shhhhh, we love surprises!
And finally, we have an open board position. Through the by-laws, we can appoint a new board member until our next membership meeting where elections take place. Are you interested in joining this dynamic group? If you have questions about what participation looks like, send us an email (OshkoshFoodCoop@gmail.com ) or contact one of the current Board members (contact information here) to have a conversation. We would love to talk with you!
Have a fantastic holiday season,
Kelly on behalf of the Oshkosh Food Co-op Board