Ted Howard contributed this essay to Investing in What Works for America’s Communities, a book published by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and the Low Income Investment Fund that calls on leaders from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to build on what we know is working to move the needle on poverty.
The Evergreen Cooperative Development Fund has been launched in Cleveland. The nonprofit revolving loan fund will be used to catalyze a robust network of worker-owned cooperatives in the city's Greater University Circle Neighborhoods.
The Democracy Collaborative has entered into a partnership with the Cleveland Foundation to help develop the economic development component of the foundation's multi-pronged initiative focused on the city's Greater University Circle neighborhoods. The initiative seeks to focus the economic practices of local anchors (such as universities, hospitals and cultural institutions) to support community wealth building strategies.
Exploring the potential that worker cooperatives can have in creating effective economic democracy, this report from the Community Innovators Lab (CoLab) at the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning examines both the Evergreen Cooperative Initiative in Cleveland, OH and the Mondragón Complex in Basque Country, Spain, and key differences between the two models.
The newest of the Evergreen Cooperative, broke ground on October 17th. Situated on ten acres, the greenhouse will annually produce more than 3 million heads of lettuce, 300,000 pound of fresh herbs, and will employ 35 worker-owners.
In the fall of 2006, The Democracy Collaborative began organizing a series of Community Wealth Building Roundtables in cities across the country. One of the first of these conferences was held in Cleveland, Ohio. The Roundtable – “Building Community Wealth: New Asset-Based Approaches to Solving Social and Economic Problems in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio” – brought together local economic development practitioners and advocates, policy makers from the city and county, labor, business leaders, and anchor institutions. The day-long dialogue focused on the local situation, created linkages across sectors and organizations, and helped identify opportunities with in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio to expand the field and to build greater support for a comprehensive strategy of community wealth building innovations and policies.