Ten groups in Norfolk and Suffolk share £21,193 in 2019 thanks to the Central England Co-op Community Dividend Fund

Ten groups, good causes and charities across Norfolk and Suffolk shared £21,193 during 2019 thanks to a donation from Central England Co-op’s Community Dividend Fund.

A diverse range of projects were handed a funding boost during the past 12 months, with the largest single amount given being £5,000.

In total, 114 organisations spread out across 16 counties shared a funding pot of £177,885

In Norfolk and Suffolk, some of the projects awarded funding including:

  • Halesworth Kuk Sool Won martial arts will use £5,000 to pay for a new roof for its dojo. The site is 25 years old and it is hoped that the work will ensure it continues to serve its more than 1,000 members for a further two and a half decades.
  • Members of Lowestoft Shopmobility now have a new £2,000 scooter to help get around town thanks to a grant.
  • A total of £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.
  • The West Norfolk Dead Association, based in Kings Lynn, will use £1,990 to spruce up its specialist deaf centre, which is used by over 300 people a month with hearing problems.

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 of between £100 and £5,000 are handed out every three months to a wide range of applicants.

Debbie Robinson, Chief Executive of Central England Co-operative, said: “We have handed out £177,885 to projects in our communities in 2019 – with £21,193 of that being right here in Norfolk and Suffolk.

 “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 visiting https://communities.centralengland.coop/

 

Notes to editors

 

Picture caption: Groups from across Norfolk and Suffolk celebrate being awarded grants from Central England Co-op’s Community Dividend Fund in 2019.

 

Below is a full breakdown of all the grants awarded in the area and quotes from some of the groups:

 

Halesworth Kuk Sool Won martial arts will use £5,000 to pay for a new roof for its dojo. The site is 25 years old and it is hoped that the work will ensure it continues to serve its more than 1,000 members for a further two and a half decades.

Kevin Clouting, Chairman of Halesworth Kuk Sool Won committee, said: “The generosity of Central England Co-op has quite literally stunned and humbled us all.

“The donation is quite frankly breathtaking in its generosity and will allow us to carry out some major and much needed renovations.”

Members of Lowestoft Shopmobility now have a new £2,000 scooter to help get around town thanks to a grant.

Margaret Oldham, Chairman of Lowestoft Shopmobility, said: “The scheme was formed 22 years ago to improve the quality of life for anyone with mobility impairments.

“Some of the older mobility scooters which we hire out can no longer be repaired, so we were delighted to hear that a grant from the Central England Co-op Community Dividend Fund will enable us to buy a new, large pavement scooter, which will be used by our members to do their shopping independently."

The 1st Earsham Scout Group will soon have a new access ramp for disabled youngsters to use its facilities thanks to a £1,500 grant.

Wells Community Hospital Trust will spend over £800 on a vital hearing loop system that will play a part in turning an unused office space into a community room for a wide range of groups.

A total of £1,730 will be used by Conquest Art Group to create mobile art storage units and buy a selection of tools. The units are needed as members of the group are impacted by limited mobility due to a range of physical disabilities.

Davina Wilson, Conquest Art Group leader, said: “The grant will be used for specially designed storage units and new craft equipment to enable a much wider and more easily accessible choice for our members to enjoy, and allow everyone in our group the opportunity to explore different and exciting ways of being creative. 

“We are all really appreciative and so pleased to know our application has been successful.”    

Bungay Black Dog Running Club is looking to be more inclusive by using a £500 grant to pay for a disabled toilet to ensure potential members with disabilities are catered for.

Jayne Capps-Jenner, chairman of the club, said: “Having this facility will make a huge difference to the club in terms of being able to expand our membership of disabled people and offering them an equal opportunity to take part in regular activity.”

Brundall Allotment Association, which aims to encourage the community to produce healthy food choices, will use £1,223 to pay for a new poly-tunnel. The new equipment will allow for the group to appeal more to children and people with disabilities.

A total of £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.

The money will be used to pay for everything from an education centre to tools for the children.

Hartford Manor School, in Ipswich Road, Norwich, will use £2,030 to fund a unique project that will pay for outside musical instruments.

Louise Bishop-Howes, from Edfords Care Farm, said: “Edfords Care Farm is very excited to have received a grant from the Co-op Community Dividend Fund.

“The money is being used to set up our Farm School, we run weekly groups for children aged five to 11 with special educational needs and will be expanding this to offer sessions for school groups looking to learn about farming with nature in mind and teaching them the importance of farm to fork principles.

“The Farm School will have an education centre, fruit and vegetable gardens, small animals and a safe space to learn outside the classroom as well as access to the rest of the farm where we keep our pigs, sheep, goats and poultry.

“Without the Central England Co-op Community Dividend Fund setting up Edfords Farm School would have taken years, we’re very grateful that, with the help from the grant, we can start offering children this opportunity from November this year.”

The West Norfolk Dead Association, based in Kings Lynn, will use £1,990 to spruce up its specialist deaf centre, which is used by over 300 people a month with hearing problems.

Karen Robson, General Manager, said: “We are extremely grateful to the Central England Co-operative for this money for redecoration which will make a huge difference to the organisation and to the hundreds of deaf people who visit our centre on a regular basis.”

 

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, travel shops, 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 2019.

 

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 member 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 members@centralengland.coop or visiting https://www.members.coop

 

For more information visit www.centralengland.coop, follow Central England Co-operative on Twitter: @mycoopfood, and on Facebook: facebook.com/centralenglandcooperative

 

Rob Smyth and James Brindle at Central England Co-operative on 01543 421390

 

Email –publicrelations@centralengland.coop