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75 Years of Cooperative Impact: Developing the Template for Cooperative Development Abroad


In the 1950s, The Freedom Fund – the predecessor to the Cooperative Development Fund – changed its name to the Fund For International Cooperative Development to reflect its new focus on the development needs of Third World nations.


On the heels of Indian independence, the Fund for International Cooperative Development joined forces with the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and established a permanent office in New Delhi manned by Cooperative Hall of Famer Dr. Allie Felder Jr.


As director of the India office, Felder helped strengthen and develop countless co-ops and programs involving supervised credit, hybrid seed production and distribution, co-op education, milk marketing, and oil-seed processing. He recruited NRECA to help start 5 rural electric co-ops electrifying thousands of Indian Villages. Fedler also secured soybean oil for the National Dairy Development Board of India to establish the oilseeds growers co-op project and developed a dairy co-op to provide low-cost, high quality milk to populated areas. He helped the National Cooperative Union of India develop new training methods and materials. In honor of this work, the Prime Minister of India recognized Felder with a certificate of honor from the National Cooperative Union of India.



Founded on the concepts of self-help and mutual aid at the grass roots level, the programs developed by the India office became the blueprint for cooperative development in Latin America, the Caribbean, Indonesia, and Africa. Over the years, CDF invested over $1.5 million in India and, in partnership with U.S. fertilizer, dairy, and oilseed cooperatives and the leading Indian cooperative organization, helped create three of the largest cooperatives in Asia at the time.


For more on Dr. Allie Felder Jr. go to: https://www.heroes.coop/post/allie-c-felder-jr .


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