Springing into Action!

May 5, 2023

Spring has arrived in Saskatoon! There is a warm, renewed optimism in the city as people look forward to the new growing season with hope and trust in the good things to come. This is also the mood at the Steep Hill Co-op, among staff, members, shoppers and the interim Board of Directors that were recently elected at a Special Members Meeting on April 24.

The store front of Steep Hill Food Co-op with largely visible vinyl window sign of the Steep Hill logo with text that reads, Your Local Organic Food Market.

Our photos are on the store’s website, and short biographies will follow. We are a diverse group with varied backgrounds and interests. But we have one common focus, and that is to put our efforts, right now, into ensuring that Steep Hill, one of the oldest food co-operatives in Canada, becomes one of the most financially secure, well-managed, responsive and responsible options for those shoppers looking to source local, nourishing and sustainably produced food at great, competitive prices. This is what we were elected to do, and our group is committed to seeing that goal become a reality.

This goal is shared by so many people. Our current and potential members, staff, suppliers – we are so grateful for your support. Kudos and warm appreciation are in order.

First of all, a big thank you to our amazing staff, Scott and Sammy, who are working with members of the Board to ensure that we have full and transparent knowledge and understanding of the crucial day-to-day details of managing Steep Hill, and who have both generously and good-naturedly, agreed to spur of the moment shift and other sudden changes. These two employees are smart, dedicated, hard-working and committed to the successful future of the co-operative. Give them your thanks and a high five the next time you’re in the store!

Produce bin with bags of Floating Gardens basil and a bunch of tomatoes.

Secondly, our sincere appreciation to Marcel, Steep Hill’s previous Manager, as well as to the outgoing Board, all of whom were co-operative and willing to work with us up until the very last day of their tenure – and beyond – to ensure a smooth transition. Marcel was instrumental in calling the Special Members Meeting that ultimately saved Steep Hill from closure, and we all owe him our gratitude.

Where would we be without the dedication of our tremendously generous and gifted group of volunteers, who are willing to do anything necessary – from stocking shelves to website maintenance to social media posting? Many hands make light work, and you all embody the truest representation of the co-operative spirit.

And finally, a sincere and heartfelt thank you to you, our amazing and involved members. Interim Board members have been in the store every day since the April 24 meeting and have been encouraged by your energy and enthusiasm for this co-operative.

If you haven’t already done so, be sure to fill out the survey “Working together to strengthen Steep Hill”. We have received almost 100 completed surveys so far. We are learning so much about the skills, knowledge, recommendations, preferences, and suggestions members are offering this way. All responses have provided valuable thoughts and ideas that are helping us understand Steep Hill’s potential.

We want to make a special mention and extend a heart-felt thanks to members and all others who have donated to the fundraising campaign. Your generous support will get us over this immediate financial hurdle by making it possible to invest in needed improvements. Every dollar raised will go to rebuilding and strengthening Steep Hill for the future. Check out the Go Fund Me page to see how close we are to our $50,000 goal – and help us get there as soon as possible!

NEW Tuesday hours!

Some of you have said that you would like to see the store open earlier, so beginning on May 9, Steep Hill will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. every Tuesday. Come in early on Tuesday mornings, and shop from a beautiful selection of fresh produce. Stock up on staples while you’re here! Other days of the week, established hours are continuing, with Mondays and Wednesday through Saturday open 12 til 7, and Sundays, 11 til 4.

Ann Smith,

On behalf of the Steep Hill Interim Board