We have helped change the lives of 114 groups and charities – by donating £177,885 from our Community Dividend Fund in 2019.
A diverse range of projects picked from across 16 counties were handed a funding boost during the past 12 months, with the largest single amount given being £5,000.
Everyone from schools and churches to support groups and volunteer organisations benefited from the fund that guarantees that at least one per cent of the Society’s trading profit is reinvested in local communities in a bid to help projects to thrive from the Midlands to the East Coast.
Grants were handed out to good causes in Derbyshire, Cambridgeshire, Leicestershire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Northants, West Midlands, Warwickshire, Bedfordshire and Yorkshire.
Among the grants awarded were:
· Visitors to Willington Nature Reserve will soon be able to take in everything from ducks to dragonflies all year round after the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust was awarded £2,000 to pay for a brand new log cabin. The building will be used as an all-weather visitor information centre.
· In Cambridgeshire, lifesavers from Magpas Air Ambulance will be wearing brand new flight suits when heading across the East of England and beyond to support the emergency services after receiving £2,000.
· In Leicestershire, a total of £5,000 has been handed to St Matthews Big Local to help the community hub completely rebuild its toilets to help more than 2,000 residents and 200 volunteers who use the building all year round.
· In Norfolk and Suffolk 4,420 has been handed to Edfords Care Farm, in Mautby, to build a bespoke area of the site to cater for youngsters with special education needs.
· In Northamptonshire, Action for Asperger’s, based in Corby, has been awarded £4,050 to pay for the creation of special bags filled with sensory toys as part of its work offering specialist autism counselling for all ages.
· Birmingham Crisis Centre has been handed £3,500 to pay for the complete refurbishment of one of its accommodation units, which provide a kitchen, bathroom and bedroom for female victims of domestic abuse and their children.
Debbie Robinson, Chief Executive of Central England Co-operative, said: “We have handed out £177,885 to projects in our communities in 2019.
“The Community Dividend Fund reflects a key principle of our society, in that we reward the loyalty of our customers by investing in and supporting local communities.
“The scheme helps to benefit a wide variety of projects, which will make the local area that we serve a better place for our members to live, work and visit.
“I would like to urge all of our members to get in touch and put forward a community cause close to their heart for the Community Dividend Fund scheme during the coming 12 months.”
People can apply for funding by heading online to https://communities.centralengland.coop/