Successful co-ops maintain their business, their buildings and the environment. Part of maintaining your co-op’s business is ensuring that your board of directors understands financial responsibility, ethical conduct and the difference between the duties of board and staff. While understanding is not enough, it’s where good governance starts.
Co-operative education is the fifth co-op principle. However, training may not always be at the top of the list for busy co-op boards. Newly elected directors may seek out some board training, complete it, and think they’ve done all that’s necessary. Board education, though, is an ongoing annual responsibility.
Yearly professional development is standard practice for many professionals who need to maintain their designations and certifications. Board development for co-op housing boards should be no different since laws and best practices are always changing. Directors have a responsibility to keep up so that they can avoid mistakes that put their housing co-op at risk. While co-op managers and co-ordinators are great sources of information, board members must cast their net wider in order to stay well informed.
The Agency strongly encourages all boards to arrange for training every year, and newly elected directors should insist on it. Your federations are there to help.
Check their websites for resources and upcoming training events.
In British Columbia:
- Southern Alberta Co-operative Housing Association (SACHA)
- Northern Alberta Cooperative Housing Association (NACHA)
- Co-operative Housing Federation of Toronto (CHFT) Education & Training
- Co-operative Housing Association of Eastern Ontario (CHASEO) Education & Training
- Central Ontario Co-operative Housing Federation (COCHF) Workshops
- Golden Horseshoe Co-operative Housing Federation (GHCHF) Education
- Peel/Halton Co-operative Housing Federation (PHCHF) Workshop & Events
Please contact your co-op’s federation and/or your relationship manager for more information.
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