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Send Your Kid To Energy Camp


If you have an energetic eighth grader, encourage them to apply for YouthPower Energy Camp. Sponsored by Oklahoma’s electric co-ops, Energy Camp helps teens build leadership skills and learn cooperative principles in a fun camp environment.


The camp takes place May 26-29, 2015 near the Red Rock Canyon. With a full schedule of games and group activities, teens make friends with students from across the state. During their stay, campers organize their own coke and candy co-op, elect officers and hire a general manager. They even get a lesson in safety and pole climbing from co-op linemen.


Kiwash will select a team of two students to attend Energy Camp. Each team must submit a 100-word essay on the Seven Cooperative Principles. Teams must attend school in Kiwash Electric service area.


Kiwash Electric covers all camp expenses including transportation to and from camp.


Please submit essays with cover sheet to Lisa Willard, Kiwash Electric, PO Box 100, Cordell, OK 73632, or visit www.kiwash.coop for complete details.


Deadline Reminder


Teens interested in winning a $500 college scholarship from Kiwash Electric Cooperative are reminded to turn in their application by April 15, 2015. To be considered, teens must submit a written essay or a three minute video.


For more details on the scholarship competition, please visit www.kiwash.coop, or call your cooperative at 888-832-3362.


BY DENNIS KRUEGER G E N E R A L M A N A G E R


Voluntary and Open Membership Why this principle still applies to electric co-ops today


deeper into the cooperative business model and its founding principles. She said, “We want to see that they truly understand what we mean when we say there is a cooperative difference.”


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When electric co-op members look at the seven co-op principles, many may question if they really live up to the first principle, Voluntary and Open Membership. It’s a fair question. There is a two-part answer.


First, it is important to remember that when Kiwash Electric Cooperative was formed in 1938, every potential member had the option to refuse service. While it may be hard to believe, there are numerous stories from throughout the country where the farmer said, “No thanks. We are doing fine with kerosene.” Over time, most of them changed their minds and eventually became members of the co-op.


ast month Lisa Willard challenged our high school senior’s scholarship applicants to delve


their provider. Still, the best option for most people for safe, reliable and affordable power is from your electric co-op.


Today, electric co-ops focus on the second part of the principle, Open Membership. All residents and businesses in Kiwash Electric service territory are welcome to receive power. We strive to ensure that your membership has value to you, not just through the service of electricity, but by being an active part of our community.


Co-ops offer and welcome your participation in the governance of the organization through a democratically elected board of directors. As a locally owned and controlled utility, co-ops are in a better position to understand the needs of their members, and can be quicker to react to ensure their members receive the best service possible.


“Co-ops offer and welcome your participation in the governance of the organization through a democratically elected board of directors.”


Due to the incredible cost of offering electric service, the vast majority of people and businesses only have one choice if they want to connect to the grid and receive electricity. That’s changing as city limits expand into established cooperative territories and give some consumers the option to choose their electric service provider. Many large power consumers already have the option to pick


2 | MARCH 2015 | Kilowatt


Members are welcome to suggest improvements to their co-op’s operations and, unlike large investor owned utilities with millions of customers, you can be assured your ideas will actually be read by a real person in real time.


All co-ops, whether it is your credit union, farm co-op, telephone co-op or any of the 29,000 co-ops that exist in the U.S. today, live by these seven co-op principles:


1. Voluntary and Open Membership 2. Democratic Member Control 3. Members’ Economic Participation 4. Autonomy and Independence 5. Education, Training and Information 6. Cooperation among Cooperatives 7. Concern for Community


By using all of these principles integrated together, Kiwash Electric Cooperative is able to serve your needs every day.


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