Proposal: Subscription funding two projects


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Where next for Co-op Brum?

Co-operation Birmingham should continue providing meals to those who need them and being a community kitchen.

Set up a membership subscriber system based on open collective - a patreon style co-operative finance platform that allows for transparent and open finances. A subscription means membership of Co-operation Birmingham and the includes member benefits.

These can be expanded on but initial suggestion is that this includes:

  • Free meals at the solidarity kitchen cafe on Mondays
  • Membership of a newly formed media co-operative or (other project - this proposal is to facilitate the creation of a second project and can be passed without the media project proposal)

100 subscribers: 50/50 split between cafe and media co-op. £10 base or £20 solidarity subscription means each project get £500 a month. These figures are calculated one 100% £10 subscription rates. £500 is enough to provide ingredients for 100 meals per week at £1.25 for each meals ingredients and 50 hours monthly at £10 an hour to a project coordinator for the Media Co-operative.

150 subscribers: additional subscriptions at a 40/60 split means 120 weekly meals and 90 hours monthly work producing articles and managing the media co-operative

200 subscribers: additional subscriptions at a 20/80 split means 140 weekly meals and 130 hours monthly work producing articles and managing the media co-operative

After we have developed a core of dedicated members who have access to both benefits we will have reached capacity in the kitchen for meals and can offer ‘media co-op only membership tier of £3.50’.

1000 subscribers: additional subscriptions at a 10/90 split with 800 at £3.50 means 196 weekly meals and 382 hours for the media co-operative. Or alternatively 10 paid feature articles at £100 each with 282 hours wages.

1 Like

I think this is a good idea, but we’d need to find ways of making subscriptions more attractive. As I suggested during the AGM, this could include discounts or special offers at coops associated with Coop Brum (or that want to support us). Also merch would be a good idea, like giving a t-shirt or a scarf to people that has kept their subscription during one year for example.

Finally, I’ve reflected about what I proposed at the AGM of having a sliding scale of membership. I don’t think it’s a good idea, as it would be reproducing differences between people depending on their ability to pay. Thus, I think we should give people different options in terms of how much they want to contribute, but they should all get the same benefits.

I agree that people should receive the same benefits. The sliding scale would just be on the income side was the thinking behind the discussion @loreid and I had about it.

Yeah the discussion between me and @sean_f was around £10/mo (which is what is currently modelled in the projectcions) being potentially way above what some people might be able to afford. The sliding scale was to make sure that as many people as possible can afford membership, while also expecting people with good financial resources to contribute more.

One thing that Acorn Do well is a kind of full-time hourly wage equivalent so if you work full time and earn £14 an hour then that’s what you give each month. for unwaged it’s £3 this is the Acorn model but i think it could work here too.


That was actually the model I was thinking of!

Hey so I just had a working session with it about mani and we thought that it might be better to have fixed categories. This is what works on the open collective campaign, and if we give flexiblity at the lower end will mean those that have means to donate will do so by enough to cover their monthly costs. The categories suggested are £1 a month unwaged, £5 covers costs £10 medium wage £20 high wage and then class traitor tiers of £50 and £100.

This would be the main text of the page : :evergreen_tree: We are a cooperative of working class people living in and around Birmingham :department_store: Becoming a member at any tier gets you a free meal :bowl_with_spoon: every week at the Solidarity Cafe and supports Coop Brum! :dizzy:

We could also put something saying if people would have problems banking or are unable to do the unwaged tier we can set them up with membership separately. We will still have to maintain a membership airtable database separately anyhows, so it’s not hard just need to be sure to communicate the possibility.