In October a new course opened up for local entrepreneurs sponsored by the Mateh Yehuda Regional Council and Partnership 2000 of the Jewish Agency.
The goal of the course is to educate the businesspeople (either those starting out or those who have already had businesses) about setting up a cooperative businesses.
The leadership of the Mateh Yehuda Regional Council traveled to Spain this past summer to learn about the types of cooperative businesses that have been started there and determined this model could suit our region and it's rural businesses.
The course is covering the background and laws of cooperative business, marketing techniques and financial planning and analyze the advantages and disadvantages of this business model.
Participants will visit cooperative businesses of various types around Israel and learn from them.
It is hoped that the participants in the course will meet others who they can team up with to start cooperative businesses such as artists, vintners and other suitable businesses.
"The course is very interesting. I am learning a ton and the people in the course are very diverse" says Judy Montel, a Beit Shemesh resident with a craft and music business who also joined the course. "I want to learn about the coop to see if it is a suitable business model for what I would like to do", she reports. Some of the businesses represented in the course are: microbreweries, artists, catering services and other tourist related businesses.