The Isla Vista Food Co-op is a natural and organic foods consumer cooperative located in Santa Barbara. The co-op is the product of student empowerment and activism that began in 1970, and remains dedicated to cooperative principles of collective ownership and sustainability (all three E’s – economy, ecology, equity). The mission of the Isla Vista Food Co-op is “to provide the the residents of Isla Vista and neighboring communities of Santa Barbara with reasonably priced foods, products and services that promote a healthier lifestyle and environment,” with a vision of “a community engaged in cooperative principles and values of social, economic, and environmental values” (the Isla Vista Food Coop Website). Sound familiar? The CSSC and the Isla Vista Food Co-op share very similar values.
Over the years, the Isla Vista Food Co-op has been very supportive of the CSSC – and now they need our help. The co-op is at risk of losing the space that has been its home for the past 32 years. The owner of the space recently notified Isla Vista Food Co-op that they must purchase the space when their lease ends, or it will be put on the market for sale.
And thus, the Isla Vista Food Co-op launched “Project We Own It,” a campaign to raise the necessary funds by mobilizing the communities that support the co-op. Already, the project has raised over $100,000 through the power of community support. Now, they have less than forty days to raise the remaining $90,000 in order to purchase their property and achieve the kind of stability that will allow the co-op to flourish long into the future.
This is no small challenge, but with the help of the thousands of people who care about the cooperative, sustainable food movement, there’s no doubt that it can be done.
That’s why we at the CSSC are asking YOU to make a small (well, any size, really) pledge to Project We Own It. All you have to do is CLICK HERE and you can be part of the change.
This is not about donating to some organization just because you think it’s the right thing to do. This is about seizing the opportunity to take a stake in your future. Supporting the Isla Vista Food Co-op means supporting the cooperative food system, helping it grow and succeed, which ultimately means we all succeed – because cooperatives are really about us. So please, make a pledge, whatever you can contribute, to claim ownership of a brighter future in California.