My Mountain Co-op is a non-profit community service co-operative with the purpose of providing recreational opportunities via the Shames Mountain Ski Area. My Mountain Co-op strives to enhance the health and quality of life of the communities in our region that, in turn contribute to the long term viability and sustainability of the co-operative. We are Canada’s first non-profit community service ski co-operative.
Vision and Mission
Mission: Build community through inclusive mountain experiences.
Vision: An engaged cooperative will renew and sustain a resilient operation for mountain recreation.
To help achieve our vision, My Mountain Co-op incorporates four cornerstones into every facet of our operations. The cornerstones are considered with every decision and plan that the co-operative makes.
By being responsible in our choices, so that skiing can continue to be accessible for our communities.
By being financially and environmentally responsible in our actions.
By developing partnerships with like minded organizations, businesses and individuals.
By being a community service co-operative, our governance structure and process allow us to operate with a unique and co-operative business structure.
- Affordable for users
- Operate in a way that is economically viable for the long term
- Manage to create benefits for skiers and our communities
- Governed by the principles of social enterprise, not by shared capital
- Locally rooted, but global in reach
My Mountain Co-op (MMC) was built on the foundation of a non-profit society called Friends of Shames (FoS). Local skiers and boarder formed Friends of Shames in 2008 when the owners of the Shames Mountain Ski Area wanted to retire and put the ski hill for sale. No buyer meant the ski hill could have closed.
FoS’s principle mandate was to pinpoint the most effective way to keep the ski hill open and viable for the long-term. The non-profit explored possible business models such as non-profit societies, co-operatives and charities. FoS also hosted numerous community forums to gather feedback and encourage discussion. Lawyers and consultants who specialize in non-profit and alternative business structures were consulted. Ultimately, FoS determined that the community service co-operative model was the structure with the best chance of sustaining the Shames Mountain Ski Area for the long term.
My Mountain Co-op (MMC) was officially created in February 2011. Local individuals, businesses, societies and corporations bought memberships and worked together to raise awareness about the benefits of running the ski area as a community service co-op. Through this awareness campaign, fundraising efforts, membership shares and corporate donations, MMC was able to enter a purchase agreement with the former owners and began operating Shames for the first time in 2011.
As of January 2013, MMC achieved the remarkable milestone of officially owning the Shames Mountain Ski Area making us Canada’s first non-profit community service ski co-operative. The co-op makes skiing at Shames Mountain possible.