National Confederation of Cooperatives

National Confederation of CooperativesThe National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCCO) was formed by credit union pioneers who believed that the task of co-op development lies primarily in the hands of the private sector. These leaders believed in self-help and in the idea that people in poverty need to create opportunities for themselves to improve their economic well being. The co-op sector leaders were aware that in order to succeed they cannot rely on government alone. Instead, co-ops have to be driven and patronized by their members and it is only through co-op education that this level of member patronage and responsibility can be established.

Thus, in the 1950’s to the 70’s, a large number of privately-initiated primary co-ops banded as five regional co-op training centers (secondary cooperatives). In 1977, the five regional training centers formed NATCCO, then known as the National Association of Training Centers for Co-ops, to coordinate the trainings and educational services for cooperatives at the national level. NATCCO also served as the voice of co-ops belonging to the network.

In response to the growing needs of primary co-op affiliates, in 1986 NATCCO was transformed into a multi-service national co-op federation while the regional training centers were transformed into multi-service co-op development centers. The acronym NATCCO was retained and its meaning converted to the present, National Confederation of Cooperatives.

Today, NATCCO is the biggest and strongest federation of co-ops in the Philippines, in terms of geographical reach, membership, financial capacity and array of services. It now has around 1.2 million individual members coming from several co-op federations and some 308 rural and urban-based co-ops.

SOEMCO became an affiliate of NATCCO by virtue of its affiliation with the MASS-SPECC in 2006. Nevertheless, SOEMCO decided to directly affiliate with NATCCO in 2009 which paved the way for the implementation of the Microfinance Innovations for Cooperatives (MICOOP) Program in Dapa, Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte.