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A series of educational podcasts on home care cooperatives was developed in October 2016 by the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives in collaboration with the Cooperative Development Foundation, and through a generous grant from the USDA Rural Development. The podcasts address common issues share by home care cooperatives and can be particularly useful for new cooperative members or for individuals interested in starting a home care co-op. The more established cooperatives and cooperative developers can also benefit from these podcasts.


Many thanks to Margaret Bau from USDA Rural Development, Kippi Waters from Peninsula Homecare Cooperative, and Sharon Becker from Cooperative Care for sharing their expertise and passion about home care co-ops. 

Podcast 1: Meaning of Cooperative Membership in Home Care Cooperatives

Listen to the podcast: Listen on Soundcloud (duration 20 min and 42 sec) 

Objective: Listeners will be able to understand what a cooperative is and how they can benefit from it as members-owners

Questions Addressed:

  • What is a cooperative?

  • Home care cooperatives - how are they different from an agency?

  • Who can be a member of a co-op?

  • Are there any benefits of being a member? 

  • What is the process of being a member?

  • Do members have any responsibilities?

Provide Feedback:

Podcast 2: Staff Recruitment and Retention in Home Care Cooperatives

Listen to the Podcast: Listen on Soundcloud (duration 15 min 6 sec)  

Objective: Listeners will learn about strategies for staff recruitment and retention in homecare cooperatives 

Questions Addressed:

  • What staff recruitment issues are faced my homecare cooperatives?

  • Are there any successful recruitment strategies? 

  • Why caregivers choose to work at a home care co-op?

  • How should the hiring process be conducted?

  • Who makes the  hiring decisions in a co-op?

  • How can a co-op retain good staff?

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Podcast 3: Cooperative Governance and Board Decision-Making in Home Care Cooperatives

Listen to the Podcast: Listen on Soundcloud (duration 21 min 33 sec)

Objective: Listeners will learn about effective governance and decision-making in a homecare cooperative

Questions Addressed:

  • What is governance in a home care cooperative?

  • What roles do the members, board, and management play?

  • Who can serve on the board?

  • What are the board responsibilities?

  • What does it mean to be a cooperative board member?

  • Why are manager and board evaluations important?

  • What are some potential conflicts of interest?

  • How do boards prepare for board meetings?


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Wisconsin Public Radio Interview: Cooperative Program Aims to Boost Quality of Home Care

Wisconsin is part of a nationwide effort to boost working conditions for home care workers under cooperative model and provide better and more consistent care for seniors and others. 

Featuring: Anne Reynolds, Retired Executive Director of the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives and Tracy Dudzinski, HR Coordinator for Cooperative Care in Wautoma 

Original recording:…t-quality-home-care

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