Celebrating National Co-op Month
October is the month to celebrate the benefits cooperatives bring to our communities. Whether the cooperative’s focus is food, child care, insurance, electricity or some other service, we exist to help serve a need in the communities we live in.
Cooperatives are unique because we are not-for-profit, democratically controlled and member owned. The cooperative business model is about meeting the needs of the people, not about maximizing profits. In the United States, more than 900 electric co-ops serve an estimated 42 million people. At Northern Lights Inc. (NLI), we have almost 19,000 members and more than 2,900 miles of distribution lines serving members in Northern Idaho, Eastern Washington and Western Montana.
NLI is overseen by a seven-member board of directors, each elected by the members of the district they represent. Our power comes from the Bonneville Power Administration and our own dam on a tributary of the Kootenai River. NLI distributes that power to each of its members’ homes and businesses.
One way NLI serves its community is through Operation Roundup, where members can choose to round up their monthly energy bill to the nearest dollar to help families in need. Members can also choose to donate to the Helping Hand program—specifically designed to help struggling members with their power bills—or Project Share, which provides home heating assistance. If you would like to participate in any of these programs, please contact us to sign up.
Summer has come to an end. The leaves are changing, and autumn is upon us. Before we know it, those princesses, superheroes, ghosts and goblins will be knocking on our doors hoping for a treat.