More than £1,000 has been shared out between community groups in Leicestershire and Northamptonshire thanks to Central England Co-op


Groups looking to combat loneliness and isolation in Leicestershire and Northamptonshire have been awarded a share of funding from Central England Co-op.

The cash boost has been provided by the Southern Member & Community Council (MCC), who work closely with the communities around Food Stores and Funeral Homes by offering funding opportunities and volunteering support.

Two of the recipients are organisations that are looking to combat loneliness, encourage new friendships and increase quality of life for isolated and elderly people in the area. 
Open Spaces in Braunstone has been awarded £200 in Co-op vouchers to support lunch for isolated people, and Ratby Holiday Home will use£200 towards lunches for the elderly during the summer holidays.
A total of £100 has been awarded towards a ‘Jo Cox’ picnic in Eyres Monsell to help bring the community together. The aim of the picnic is to form strong community bonds in an area that has seen a recent rise in levels of poverty and crime.
A total of £50 has been donated to a Young Person’s Dementia Friendly event at the Corn Market, in Kettering. 
This will allows vital information to be passed to young people, providing them with tools and coping strategies they may need.
The funding award comes after Central England Co-op colleagues voted Dementia UK as its corporate charity in 2017. 
The NHS celebrates its 70th birthday this year, and £50 has been donated for a cake to commemorate the occasion at a city event at the Clock Tower in Leicester.
Other funding recipients included Rutland County Show, The Sue Townsend Theatre and Asfordby Fete.
Karen Bevan, Member and Community Relations Officer for the Southern Region, said: “The Co-operative has a long tradition of giving back to the community, and recent Social Return on Investment calculations showed that for every £1 Central England Co-op puts into the community the value of that impact is worth an amazing £23.15. 
“As a co-operative we welcome the opportunity to make a real difference to the lives and education of the people who live in the communities around our Food Stores.
“I am proud the Southern Membership and Community Council were able to support these eight projects and we all look forward to seeing the benefit for recipients.”
Central England Co-operative offers a wide range of educational and recreational workshops and classes for its members and communities through its Member and Community Relations Officers.
If you are interested in finding out more, please pop in to your local Central England Co-operative Food Store or email 
People can also find out more about the work of the Membership and Community Council by visiting

Notes to editors

About Central England Co-operative

Central England Co-operative is one of the largest independent retail co-operative societies in the UK. 

It is a modern, forward-looking organisation employing over 8,000 staff, with the Society’s principal areas of activity being food, funeral services, and property investment.

Central England Co-operative has over 400 trading outlets across 16 counties including; West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.  The Society has an ambitious food store development programme for 2018. 

Central England Co-operative is proud of its reputation for ethical business practices and corporate responsibility.  It is a member of Business in the Community, the membership organisation that stands for responsible business, and has also won many business awards for excellence.  The Society supports a number of charities including Dementia UK and invests a percentage of its trading profit into local communities.

Becoming a member of Central England Co-operative offers a whole host of benefits ranging from collecting points every time you spend in store to earn a share of the profits, access to members activities and community initiatives including the Community Dividend Fund, which hands out grants of up to £5,000 to charities and good causes across the Society’s trading estate.
Find out how to become a Central England Co-operative member by calling 0800 0501 601, emailing or visiting

For more information visit, follow Central England Co-operative on Twitter: @mycoopfood, and on Facebook:

Rob Smyth / Heather Clapton at Central England Co-operative on 01543 414140

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