"Weaver St. is an established food co-op, which has been highly successful at building not only its brand, and balance sheet, but also the community in which it resides.
It has spawned cooperative housing projects, and a community radio station, and it has become a remarkable anchor for the Town of Carrboro.
To their credit, the folks at Weaver St. wrapped their arms around Melissa as Chatham Marketplace took shape.
Somewhere in the Co-op creed is the idea that startups should get an assist from the established, and Weaver St. Market did just that.
Instead of worrying about competition, or about whether or not they would lose valuable organic food eaters if a new grocery store were formed, Weaver St. Market lent a hand to Chatham Marketplace.
Their founders offered free advice, and they had a feasibility study on a Pittsboro location sitting on the shelf collecting dust, which they passed along.
Weaver St. freely gave power away to Melissa, and as a result they became more powerful.
Now Chatham Marketplace exists in the world, and for that Weaver St. Market deserves a large slice of credit."
"The Weave" is a treasured icon within the national co-operative grocery movement - particularly, when it demonstrates the unity and democracy of purpose that is co-operation at its best.
At this tender moment in our own affairs, it doesn't hurt any of us - me, at the top of the list (!) - to remember that, and to draw strength from it.
[I have never met Lyle Estill. I have no clue how to get a hold of him. I hope he will not mind my printing this excerpt - bearing in mind I link to a place where you can buy his book!]