Monday, November 06, 2006

Assignment Four

Our proposal is going to center around creating a Non-Profit arm for the cooperative. It will probably be related to education within the community, but this is still up in the air...

We plan to research first by looking into what other coops have done already, then we plan to talk to local attorneys to find out more about 501(c)3's and the processes to do one, plus we plan to some of our own reading and research to help us gain a better understanding of what they can do....

I expect to find a very worthwhile project that will be costly and very time-consuming. But I also expect that it will clearly show that any pros will far outweigh the cons. But it is going to be a project. Another area I've thought to look further into that could be potentially just as beneficial to Peoples and the cooperative movement, is possible using the local food coops in conjunction with each other to create a non-profit arm... but it will greatly depend on what People's wants to do with it and how far they want to go and how long they are willing to wait for it... plus, it will also depend on how many resources they have to put towards the entire project. But to make it more of reality that will benefit them sooner rather than later, it may be a way for them to look.... We plan to make our final project into a report with plenty of references in the end and to have recommendations based on our findings. Plus, we will probably prepare a basic presentation in PowerPoint in order to highlight the important parts.

I'm going to focus my time on studying and reading through all the information I can on non-profits of all kinds and talking to some attorneys to find out what all is involved in Oregon. Plus, I've found that the most valuable skill I have for our team is to help keep things and ideas on track or in reality. I seem to be the one that comes up with the little things that help give us direction. We have a couple of people that seem to have some great research skills and they really enjoy doing it... so it is my plan to stay out of their way and to assist them as much as possible with they are doing, so as to not slow any momentum that has come along. I will be more involved in the final product and the presentation, so it will be my responsibility to know as much as possible about the whole process. We have already designated someone to work with me on preparing the PowerPoint after the report part is done. Plus I assume I'll do a fair amount of editing, when we get to the final product.

We will know more about who is doing what as we go along... but for now, we are gathering information left and right and soon we will start the sifting process.

I think our inquiry relates to the goals by allowing our group to do something that is both time-consuming and valuable to our community partner. It may very well set the stage for many future projects that could be done by students. I feel it will not only be valuable to People's, but it will be valuable to PSU and to future students.