GRM Networks’ Board of Directors awarded $17,500 to area FFA Chapters in Iowa to promote education about cooperatives. The award was funded by unclaimed capital credits of former GRM Networks cooperative members from Iowa.
As a cooperative, GRM Networks returns profits to its members in the form of capital credit checks. Extensive efforts are made to reach members who do not cash their capital credit checks. After efforts are exhausted and more than three years has passed, the money is returned to GRM Networks. According to Iowa law, GRM Networks may donate the unclaimed capital credits back to the communities in which those residents lived. Returned funds are used for specific purposes such as economic development and cooperative education. GRM Networks not only works with local economic development groups to use some of these funds, but also with schools where the funds are used for teaching or promoting cooperatives through education.
“For more than 200 years, business cooperatives have provided an environment for Americans to work together to solve problems and create opportunities bettering their communities,” said Mitchell Bailey, CEO of GRM Networks. “Their history demonstrates the importance and the vital roles they play in communities. There are roughly 31,000 cooperatives in the United States generating $650 billion in annual revenue and creating an estimated 2.1 million jobs,” he added.
GRM Networks awarded $6,500 to the Central Decatur Agriculture Program, $5,000 to the Wayne FFA Chapter, $3,500 to the Lamoni FFA Chapter and $2,500 to the Mormon Trail FFA Chapter.
“GRM Networks places great importance on investing in our future generations. Through this monetary award, area youth will have the opportunity to develop cooperative-minded projects that provide hands-on learning, where they are able to observe the cooperative structure and experience the economic and social benefits of cooperatives. We are excited to see what projects the students in these agriculture programs develop,” said Bailey.