By Caroline Brown, Co-op Member Pioneer
My community in the North of East Scotland is so important to me, so when I saw the job advert to become a Member Pioneer I jumped at the opportunity.
I didn’t realise that when I joined the business as a Member Pioneer that it meant that such an impressive milestone had been reached – there are now 500 of us across the country and we’re well on track to have 600 in post by the end of the year.
I think it’s amazing that such a large organisation like the Co-op truly values the communities it’s present in. I live in a small, rural village where bringing people together and having a real sense of community spirit is not only important, but essential.
There are two shops local to me, Pitmedden and Old Meldrum, which I will be spending my time between. For me, being part of the community is part of my everyday life. I’m so passionate about it and helping people get the most out of where they live by networking and supporting each other to share skills and resources.
Over the next few months I’ll be making sure my community know about all the great things our Co-op provides and does. From our fabulous food range to the amazing work we’re doing on spaces, skills and wellbeing as part of our Co-operate 2022 community plan – I aim to make all my community know about them!
Before we moved to Scotland, I lived in Australia with my husband and our daughters so when we moved here four years ago, I made a conscious effort to be part of where we live.
Becoming a Member Pioneer feels like the perfect opportunity to use and expand on some of the experience I already have. I’m a Brownie leader of an enthusiastic and lively group. Encouraging girls to be active members of the community and take pride and be involved in where they live is a key principle in our program, something that I like to lead by example on. I’m an active member of the village primary school PTA, I run the local youth group and have another part time job!
The role of Member Pioneer is a fantastic initiative to facilitate communities to identify and use local knowledge and resources to enhance opportunities and experiences available to them. If you think that this sounds like a role for you, you can find more information here.