Coops Fortnight Case Study

Cartrefi Cymru Co-operative used to be a very good but fairly typical, top-down, charitable provider of social care. But we saw that the values and principles of Co-operation were hugely relevant to the provision of sustainable, high quality support.

We particularly saw the relevance of the multi-stakeholder model of co-operative. Now the people we support, our employees, and all our friends and family supporters have the opportunity to become voting members whose opinions and needs are given voice and status. Their elected representatives can appoint or dismiss our Board and be actively involved in decisions about our business affairs and goals, in a new spirit of openness and accountability.

We also have a new focus on bringing people together, paid and unpaid, to strengthen their communities, using local member forums to make decisions democratically and as equals. This allows us all to be valued for our talents and expertise, in work or in life. Everyone, including people who might otherwise be defined as service recipients, has the opportunity to be a contributor. Giving to others is a great way to feel good about yourself, and now this door to well-being is open to everyone.

Membership also enables people to enjoy a sense of belonging and to make new friends both inside the co-op and out in the community. And by being accountable to our members and having their involvement hard-wired into our governance, we are providing additional reassurance of our commitment to the highest standards of social care and employment practice.


“We want to have a say in our services. The Co-op gives us strength to demand to be asked important questions."