Messages from cooperative leaders

During this time of unprecedented crisis, cooperative leaders around the world have issued messages of solidarity and support to the cooperative movement as a reminder that by continuing to hold strong to cooperative values and identity, we can recover and rebuild a stronger future. 

Return to Cooperative Endeavors During COVID-19


Ariel Guarco, ICA President

Ariel Guarco expresses his solidarity to all ICA members, and reminds everyone that in crisis situations, cooperatives have always been at the forefront leading with determination. Mr. Guarco’ calls for cooperatives to continue communicating and sharing information with each other, which can generate powerful ideas to benefit everyone. Read the entire message here.





Bruno Roelants, ICA Director General

Mr. Roelants encourages all members to prioritize health and safety for all members staff, and to refer to the World Health Organisation for the most reliable and recent information on the pandemic. Mr. Roelant also announced the creation of an online platform created with Loomio, a cooperative based in New Zealand, for members to share their experiences, contributions, and messages with each other. Read the entire message here.





International Health Cooperative Organisation

In a message sent soon after COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic, IHCO offered support and solidarity to all who are suffering from the disease. IHCO also applauded members who quickly launched initiatives to respond to the crisis, and extended gratitude and admiration to all doctors, nurses, ambulance drivers, pharmacists, janitors, administrative officers and all those workers on the front line struggling to defeat this global health challenge. Read the entire message here.




ICA-Asia and Pacific Regional Office 

ICA-AP President Li Chunsheng and Regional Director Balu Iyer were both inspired by the services, participation and contributions made by cooperatives to meet the challenges of this crisis. They also would like to hear from members on steps they are taking and support that they need. Read  their entire message here.



Graciela Quintas

Graciela Fernandez Quintas, President of Cooperatives of the Americas  

Graciela Fernández Quintas, president of Cooperatives of the Americas points out that this pandemic has stopped us from thinking about “myself” and more “us” – a situation that has forced everyone to focus on family, rediscovering the importance of balance and calm, and where we are feeling the inadequacy of some social and economic models. She has also reminded cooperators that the cooperative movement has always been resilient, and at this unexpected time, we all should build unexpected and fruitful alliances to seek open spaces for dialogue with governments, to forge inter-cooperation actions. Read her entire inspiring message here.




Cooperatives Europe: Message from the President and Director 

Cooperatives Europe President Jean-Louis Bancel recalls the International Year of Cooperatives as a reminder of the values that anchor the cooperative identity. This continues to guide the valuable exchange of ideas, support and in building a stronger future together. Director Agnes Mathis calls for cooperatives to support cooperatives to support each other wherever and whenever possible. Read the entire message here.



ICA Africa

ICA Africa 

The president and staff of the ICA Africa office call for solidarity during the pandemic, and remind cooperatives to remain vigilant on updates and guidance from authorities like the World Health Organization. Read the entire message here.



Anders Lago

Anders Lago, President of Cooperative Housing International 

“The most important thing right now is to show extra care and concern, especially towards the elderly and vulnerable people,” says Anders Lago, president of CHI. He states that it is easy to formulate values, but harder to follow them, and in a crisis like the pandemic, our values are tested each day. The cooperative model is based on long-term responsibility and cooperation, making it even more important in times like this. Read the entire message here.





European Association of Co-operative Banks  

EACB calls on regulators and supervisors to take further measures to ensure the banking sector can sustain the economy through the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more.





Mathias Fiedler, President of the European Community of Consumer Cooperatives

Mr. Fiedler salutes everyone working across supply chains day and night to guarantee uninterrupted goods and services for 30 million consumer owners and millions of European citizens. His message calls for us all to look out for our families, friends, neighbors, and for people to shop responsibly and avoid unnecessary bulk purchasing to prevent depriving others of basic necessities. Read his solidarity message here.




CEMA | CEETTAR | CLIMMAR Joint Statement

Across Europe, manufacturers of Agricultural machinery, their components and spare parts, distributors and service companies of Agricultural machinery and equipment, and Agricultural, Rural and Forestry contractors stand united to support EU farmers and agri-cooperatives and maintain the supply of food to citizens. Read the entire statement here.



Waste Pickers

Global Alliance of Waste Pickers

The Organization issued recommendations for waste pickers and their organisations agains coronavirus. Read the entire document here.




Ariel Guarco, ICA President

“The entire cooperative movement is actively involved in the collective effort that requires to answer to the health crisis that has rapidly turned into an economic and social crisis. This is as evident as it is natural. When it comes to cooperate, we people first appeal to institutions whose ordering principle is mutual aid. To institutions whose logic, precisely, is to make solidarity action more effective in responding to common problems.” Mr. Guarco offers cooperative values and principles as the logical way to rebuild a stronger future. Read the entire message here.



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