Member News: The First Principle

—by Naomi Jackson, Membership Coordinator

Hampden Park Co-op is a member-owned neighborhood grocery store. Like other cooperatives, we operate on principles established by the International Co-operative Alliance (<http://ica.coop/>).

The first principle is "Open and Voluntary Membership." According to the ICA website, "Cooperatives are voluntary organizations, 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."

At Hampden Park Co-op, this means anyone* may purchase a share of stock (current cost is $30) and participate in the business at whatever level they choose.

Participation may range from shopping regularly to volunteering in the store to serving on the board of directors. If you are interested in volunteering, sign up for an orientation in the front entryway. If you'd like to contact our board, email them at <board@hampdenparkcoop.com>.

An important note is that you do not have to be a member to shop at Hampden Park Co-op. Our mission is to make quality food available to our entire community.

* State law requires that members be residents of Minnesota. HPC bylaws prevent businesses from joining unless they are a cooperative.