The Network of Bay Area Worker Cooperatives (NoBAWC)
by Kirsten Marshall
NoBAWC (Network of Bay Area Worker Cooperatives) is hard at work in its efforts to support the worker cooperative community in many ways including: special events (e.g. organizing a May Day party, endorsing a Venezuelan worker speaking tour, and participating in the Green Fest), monthly general meetings (upcoming meetings: Monday, October 23rd in the East Bay, Wednesday, November 29th in San Francisco, Tuesday, December 19th in the East Bay), and improving our website, www.nobawc.org.
Two new cooperatives have opened in town. Soul Foods in West Oakland is a worker- and consumer owned grocery cooperative dedicated to providing healthy, quality food in an economically marginalized neighborhood. See www.mobetterfood.com for more information. Three Stone Hearth Community Supported Kitchen (CSK) in Berkeley is a worker-owned cooperative offering nutrient-dense foods to homes and families around the San Francisco Bay Area. Similar to the concept of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) the CSK allows consumers to order boxes of prepared foods. See www.threestonehearth.com for more information.
A few coops in the Bay Area also had big birthdays this year: Suigetsukan cooperative martial arts dojo (15 years) and Modern Times Bookstore worker cooperative (35 years) among others. Quite a few of our local coops are sucessfully pushing thirty.
Rainbow Grocery Cooperative continues to support other coops by selling their products ( e.g. Alvarado Street Bakery breads, Equal Exchange coffee and chocolates, and Arizmendi bread and pastries), and will soon fature beautiful and functional bulk bins by the amazing folks at the woodworking cooperative Woodshanti. Rainbow has also been supporting other cooperatives by opening up its new worker orientations to other coops and by been having workers from other coops/start-ups "shadow" some of its worker-owners.
Kirsten Marshall works at Rainbow Grocery Cooperative as a Dry Goods Department member, Coop Committee member, and Effective Meetings Committee member. She is also the assistant staff person for the Western Worker Cooperative Conference.
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