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Co-op Community Fund to help local projects


By Garry McCartney

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Co-op members have a say in how the funding is allocated.
Co-op members have a say in how the funding is allocated.

LOCAL groups and causes are being encouraged to apply for funding aimed at improving wellbeing.

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, and as its 2021 Local Community Fund application period opens, the Co-op is looking for projects that are supporting access to essential services such as foodbanks or green spaces, improving mental and physical wellbeing or building community resilience.

Director of community and shared value at the Co-op, Rebecca Birkbeck, confirmed groups involved in any of these activities are being urged to apply to be a beneficiary of the scheme which paid out an average of almost £5000 to 4500 causes across the UK last year.

She said: "The fund supports grass-roots projects across the UK that our members care about. We want to help communities to come together, co-operate and have a positive impact on community - physically and virtually. I urge any group that feels it fits our criteria to apply for funding. We know they need a funding boost now more than ever."

Co-op members, who receive a personal reward for themselves with one per cent of what they spend on Co-op own label products and services going to local causes, have a say in how the money is allocated.

The Co-op’s Community Wellbeing Index gives communities focused local information to help them understand what will make the biggest difference to local people.

The Index enables people to go on-line and compare their community with 28,000 others across the UK.

By entering a postcode the Index will reveal a community’s overall well-being score and indicate its performance across nine specific areas including: education; health and community spaces - https://communitywellbeing.coop.co.uk/

Causes wanting more information about applying for the next round of the Co-op’s Local Community Fund should visit causes.coop.co.uk. The closing date for applications is Sunday, June 28.

The Co-op also recently launched Co-operate (https://co-operate.coop.co.uk/support), an online community centre, which connects communities to local and national support initiatives, but also to volunteers who are willing to run virtual events such as exercise classes, music groups, or arts and crafts classes for others, across the country.



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