South Africa is plagued by problems of high inequality, unemployment and poverty.
Many have offered solutions on how these problems can be solved, very few voices have considered the dramatic impact that Cooperatives can have on our economic landscape. Many of our rural poor, township poor and peri urbanites will be pleasantly surprised at the transformative power of Cooperatives in their economies. Thousands of jobs and new wealth can be created once communities organise into cooperatives for food production, food processing, retail, funeral care, insurance and cooperative banking.
The South African government has various programs in place to assist communities with economic transformation through the co-op. Agencies such as the NYDA, DTI and the GEP to name a few are playing a remarkable role in facilitating change. It is time that our communities really tap into these structures.
(This picture was taken at the International Summit of Cooperatives in Quebec, 2016. I was invited as a Panellist on discussing ‘Access to capital for Cooperatives’.)