2022 Review - Estrie and Montérégie - CDRQ

2022 Review – Estrie and Montérégie

August 235 minutes of reading
During the year 2022-2023, we were fortunate to have a dedicated, skilled, and diverse team. Thanks to them, we supported promising projects for the communities in Estrie and Montérégie. We will present these achievements a little later in this report.

Over the past year, we implemented a pilot project to support profit-oriented nonprofit organizations with the Collective Entrepreneurship Hub of Estrie and the Collective Entrepreneurship Hub of Eastern Montérégie. This project is funded by the Ministry of Economy, Innovation, and Energy for a duration of approximately three years.  

During the 2022-2023 period, we conducted a tour of economic development departments in various RCMs (Regional County Municipalities) and SADC/CAEs (Community Economic Development Corporations). In total, we met with 16 RCMs. We took advantage of these meetings to present the service continuum between the Hubs and the CDRQ, as well as the renewed service offerings of the CDRQ. Additionally, we had several meetings with the Hubs to guide pre-startup project developers.

Several ongoing projects

All these meetings have been beneficial, as we started nine (9) engagements or were on the verge of starting them as of March 31, 2023. These projects are diverse and cover sectors such as agriculture, food, education, daycare services, and professional and technical services. All these projects are accompanied by one of our advisors to support them in their business plans, governance, and preparation for starting their activities.

We are confident that the nonprofit organization support project meets a need in the community and that our service offering is well-suited for it. The relationships developed with the Hubs strengthen our presence in the regions and position us as essential players in supporting collective projects in the area. Our specialized service offerings complement the work of emergence carried out by the Hubs and local organizations. We are actively working to develop our complementarities, ultimately benefiting the collective businesses in the community.

Results 2022-2023 – Estrie

The regional office in Estrie supported six projects, including the establishment of two new cooperatives. The business transfer of Taxi de Sherbrooke occurred smoothly, ensuring services to its 70 member-producers (drivers). Additionally, the creation of the Coopérative de solidarité de St-Isidore de Clifton resumed the operations of the convenience store, gas station, and hardware store in the municipality. The latter not only maintained essential local services vital to the region’s vitality but also generated 10 jobs in a town of 700 people. We also provided specialized interventions in finance, marketing, and governance to member cooperatives.

Results 2022-2023 – Montérégie

The regional office in Montérégie, on the other hand, supported 10 startup projects. Two of these projects resulted in constitution and operational commencement. The cooperative Transport-coop created two jobs and contracts for 40 member-producers (school adapted transport drivers) in the Longueuil region, generating $1,200,000 in revenue for this cooperative that began operations in September 2022. The cooperative Bœuf Québec markets Quebec beef from Quebec producers within the province. With 30 member-producers, it employs eight individuals and has an $8,000,000 turnover.

In addition to startup support, we provided assistance to five companies for advisory services involving governance, finance, feasibility studies for implementing a worker-shareholder cooperative, or executive training on directors’ roles and responsibilities.”

Radiance and Promotion of Cooperation

The year 2022 was marked by the resumption of events. On September 22, 2022, we held the Eastern Townships Cooperative Merit Gala under the honorary presidency of Marie-Ève Rocheleau, CEO of Cooptel, a communication cooperative.

More than 150 cooperators gathered to highlight the work accomplished by the region’s cooperatives and congratulate the winners in various categories. Let’s highlight the worker cooperative Niska, which won the Grand Distinction award. This collective development consultancy firm, founded in 2005, has expanded its interventions internationally as well as locally, making it an essential enterprise in supporting collective initiatives. Also, let’s mention Chrystine Lavoie, who received the 2022 Cooperative Personality award for her significant involvement and resulting achievements in the Estrie cooperative community, including her tenure as president of Accorderie, the housing cooperative of the Eastern Townships, and the Federation of Housing Cooperatives in Estrie.

We also engaged in promotional activities to maintain contact with our valuable local collaborators. We met with our partners – 30 meetings in Estrie and 8 in Montérégie. We welcomed developers and held 32 orientation meetings in Estrie and 15 in Montérégie. Finally, these representations led us to sign a cooperation agreement with the SADC of the Mégantic region, sealing the numerous collaborations we have together to support collective enterprises in the Granit MRC.

In conclusion, we’d like to thank the members of the regional advisory committees who support the regional direction in its activities, inform us of regional issues, and help us remain rooted in our regions. Moreover, there’s always room for engaged individuals if you wish to get involved! Reach out to us. A special thank you to Jean Hogue, outgoing director representing the Estrie region on behalf of Alentour cooperative, and to Bianka Dupaul, director representing the Montérégie region for coop CSUR.

Thank you for your commitment and belief in CDRQ. Finally, we’re very grateful that our user members choose us to assist them in their various challenges.

Isabelle Bergeron Communication and Member Relations Advisor