CHF BC and CHF Canada embrace the internationally recognized co-op principles: democratic member control, education and training, and autonomy are all vital, but Principle #6, co-operation among co-operatives, is one we like to highlight.
The two federations take every opportunity to exchange information on best practices to help us better serve our members. Recently, staff members from CHF BC’s Planning and Renewal team had a chance to meet with our counterparts at the national federation, including the Regional Energy Coach, when they were visiting Vancouver. We reviewed approaches to interest rate rises, construction costs, how to contend with uncertainty after 2028 around FCHI-2 supports (Federal Community Housing Initiative), and the potential and challenges of incentive programs aimed at improving energy efficiency.
At present, there are three big national programs that offer incentives tied to sustainability and greenhouse gas reduction: CMHC’s Co-investment Fund, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Green Municipal Fund, and the new Canada Greener Affordable Housing (CGAH) program. Each has some promise, but each also poses challenges around eligibility and how to turn good ideas into action. The federations hope to continue to work together and advocate for improvements for better outcomes for our housing co-op members.