As a member of Co-operatives UK, 'Power for Good' identifies with the values and principles of the Co-operative movement.  These values and principles have much in common with those of people of faith.

Statement on the Co-operative Identity, Values and Principles from the
International Year of the Cooperatives.

Definition


A co-operative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.


Values


Co-operatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity. In the tradition of their founders, co-operative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others.

 

Principles


The co-operative principles are guidelines by which co-operatives put their values into practice:


1.
Voluntary and Open Membership

Co-operatives are voluntary organisations, open to all persons able to use their services and willing to accept the responsibilities of membership, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination.


2.
Democratic Member Control

Co-operatives are democratic organisations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their
policies and making decisions. Men and women serving as elected representatives are accountable to the membership.   Members have equal voting rights (one member, one vote).


3. 
Member Economic Participation

Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their co-operative.


4.
Autonomy and Independence

Co-operatives are autonomous, self-help organisations controlled by their members. If they enter into agreements
with other organisations, including governments, or raise capital from external sources, they do so on terms that
ensure democratic control by
their members and maintain their co-operative autonomy.

5. 
Education, Training and Information

 Co-operatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers, and employees
so they can contribute effectively to the development of their co-operatives. They inform the general public - particularly young people and opinion leaders - about the nature and benefits of co-operation.

6. 
Co-operation among Co-operatives

 Co-operatives serve their members most effectively and strengthen the co-operative movement by working together
through local, national, regional and international structures.

7.
Concern for Community

 Co-operatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.