New Year’s Day usually brings hopes of good times to come. On a personal level, we make resolutions with promises of changes we plan to improve ourselves. We also can’t help but wonder what might 2012 bring to society as a whole.
In October of last year, the United Nations declared 2012 to be "The International Year of Cooperatives."
The President of the General Assembly Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser correctly explained, "By virtue of their organizational characteristics, cooperative enterprises are user-owned and community responsive. They continue to aggregate economic power enabling communities to compete successfully in the global economy."
Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro also stated, "As self-help organizations, cooperatives are inherently people-centered. They not only meet material needs, but also the human need to participate proactively in improving one's life. Moreover, with democratic decision-making processes and a focus on cultivating member skills and capacities, cooperatives offer a model for harnessing the energies and passions of all."
Has the UN given us a preview of what 2012 might bring?