Community Investment Co-ops are an exciting way to support community development. They allow people to invest in Main Street, or the local businesses and initiatives in small town. A CIC — also known as an Opportunity Development Co-op in Alberta — pools the investment money of local residents, and lends it to start-ups, uses it for renewable energy projects, and more. Investors get to see their dollars at work in their own backyards, and get a return on their money as well.

Investment co-op experts Seth Leon with the Alberta Community and Co-operative Association in Calgary, and Eden Yesh with Kootenay Employment Services in Creston, BC, talk to us about this great model.

Links referred to in this episode:

BC Community Investment Co-op Start-up and Operations guide

Co-operatives First articles:

Sangudo, AB – How investing locally can help save rural main streets

Creston, BC – Grow your community by investing locally

The Backroad Diaries video: “We’re Building Community” in Sangudo, AB

Alberta Community and Co-operative Association: Unleashing Local Capital