Co-op fund awards £50,000 to 29 groups to ensure vital work impacted by COVID-19 continues

Central England Co-op has shared out £50,000 between 29 good causes to ensure they can continue their vital community working during the Coronavirus outbreak.

The organisations were delighted to receive the funding boost during these uncertain times from the retailer’s Community Dividend Fund.

The money will now be spent by charities and organisations to ensure that events, activities and support that otherwise might have been postponed or cancelled can still go ahead and provide a vital boost to the local community.

Organisations in the following areas has been awarded a grant: Stafford, Burton, Cambridgeshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lichfield, West Midlands, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Northamptonshire, Nottingham, Birmingham and Warwickshire.

Some of the groups to benefit from the funding include:

  • Community Transformation, based in Chesterfield, will use nearly £2,000 to support a project designed at building support and relationships for people in need across the area
  • West Leicestershire Community First Responder Group supports East Midlands Ambulance Service by sending trained volunteers to medical emergencies while people await the arrival of a paramedic. The group has been awarded £2,600 to buy specialist training equipment to ensure it can continue to support the emergency services during the current Coronavirus pandemic
  • Get Wise Enterprise, in Nottingham, will use £1,990 to continue to support ex-offenders and people with mental health problems or severe learning difficulties during lockdown
  • A variety of hospices will use grants to ensure they can continue vital work as fund-raising becomes more difficult following the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic
  • The Butterfield Centre, in Lincolnshire, will buy two benches with a £300 grant to ensure its dementia patients can still enjoy time outdoors while social distancing
  • A total of £2,800 has been handed to Woodhouse Farm and Garden CIC, in Lichfield, to support vital refurbishment work to ensure it can still provide fruit and vegetables for the community during lockdown
  • Several schools have been awarded funds to support work to educate the children of key workers during this uncertain time

Debbie Robinson, Central England Co-op chief executive, said: “Now more than ever being a co-operative business that sits at the heart of our communities is so important.

“We are delighted that these great projects and good causes have been handed a grant that will allow them to continue their fantastic work in the community at this uncertain time.

“Community Dividend Fund grants like this showcase how by being a member and shopping at your local Central England Co-op store allows us as a Society to continue to invest and fund vital projects in the area.”

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

The fund 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 across its trading area of 16 counties from the Midlands to the east coast.

People can apply for funding by visiting

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.

Find out how to become a Central England Co-operative member by calling 0800 0501 601, emailing or visiting