Cooperatives

(Learn what a cooperative is!)

Interested in starting a coop?

Big Idea Bookstore thebigideapgh.org
Black Urban Gardeners and Farmers of Pittsburgh Co-op 7043 Monticello Street
Borland Green Ecovillage Black Street btwn. Borland and N. Beatty in E. Liberty
East End Cooperative Ministry eecm.org
East End Food Co-op eastendfood.coop
EEFC Credit Union eastendfood.coop/co-op/credit-union
Farmers’ Market Coop of East Liberty farmersmarketcooperativeofeastliberty.com
Fishes and Loaves Cooperative Ministry fishesandloaves5000.com
Fourth River Workers Guild languageoftheland.com
Hill District Credit Union hilldistrictfcu.org
Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative justseeds.org
Mr. Roboto Project facebook.com/robotoproject
Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance pennscorner.com
Pinup Posters Courier Collective facebook.com/PinUpCouriers
Pittsburgh Central Federal Credit Union pghcentral.com
Pittsburgh Toy Lending Library pghtoys.com
Riverset Credit Union riverset.com
Triboro Federal Credit Union triboro-fcu.org
Ujamaa Collective ujamaacollective.org
Union Project Ceramics Cooperative unionproject.org

A cooperative is an organization that is owned and democratically controlled by its members, who may be individuals or independent organizations (including other co­ops). Within this model, there is a lot of flexibility. Cooperatives exist with different structures, across many sectors, and with a variety of target members. Some of the main cooperative types are consumer (which includes buying clubs and credit unions), worker, producer, and housing co­ops.

Cooperatives are typically based on seven core principles:

  • Voluntary and open membership
  • Democratic member control
  • Economic participation by members
  • Autonomy and independence
  • Education, training, and information
  • Cooperation among cooperatives
  • Concern for community
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