OACAC’S Susan Peden poses for a photo alongside Ted Zeugin, SWEC manager of member services and communications.

Southwest Electric Cooperative recently partnered with its lender, CoBank — through its Sharing Success program — to make donations to three area community action agencies. 

OACAC Polk County, West Central Hickory County and Missouri Ozarks Camden County each received a donation of $5,000 from SWEC, the organization said via a news release.

"We are thrilled to provide some much needed financial help to these important community partners," James Ashworth, SWEC CEO/general manager, said in the release. "Our concern for the communities we live in is not just a feel good saying. The board of directors and employees of Southwest live it by taking action and giving back. The Sharing Success program is a great example of that." 

The release said CoBank is a cooperative owned by its borrowers and is a mission-based lender focused on agriculture and rural infrastructure businesses in rural America. SWEC, headquartered in Bolivar, serves more than 41,000 services throughout 11 counties in southwest Missouri. 

“The very nature of a cooperative lends itself to working with one's neighbors for the common good,” the release said. “SWEC is proud to live out that principle through the Sharing Success program and give back to our communities.” 

This is the fifth year of the Sharing Success partnership between CoBank and SWEC.

According to the release, one of the earliest cooperative enterprises was a store started by weavers in the town of Rochdale, England, in 1844. As a way to define the characteristics of this newer type of organization, the Rochdale weavers drew up a set of principles for cooperatives to live by. The seventh of these was "Concern for Community.” 

“Southwest Electric Cooperative is proud to embrace this principle of concern for community,” the release added.

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