The East of England Co-op Community Cares Fund

Standing together to make a difference

Our members, customers and colleagues are an incredibly generous lot and the last few weeks of the Coronavirus crisis have proven that.

We knew that our existing funding channels weren’t right for the challenging times we find ourselves in. As a local co-op, we wanted to empower our members to channel their generosity and make a real and positive difference to those in our communities that need the most support.

To get the fund started, we have pledged over £230,000 to the East Of England Co-op Community Cares Fund.

Divi difference

We know many of our members will want to do more to support people in their local community, so this year we’re offering our members the opportunity to donate their dividend.

Each year, we pay a share of our profits to our members in the form of a dividend. The total dividend this year is £2.1M. 

Rather than spend dividend in-store, we’re encouraging our members to donate whatever they can afford of their dividend to the East of England Co-op Community Cares Fund. 

How will we make sure funding gets to the right place

To ensure we get the funding to where it’s needed most, we’ll be working with local community groups and charity partners across Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk who have the established networks and knowledge to get donations to the right place.

We are pausing our normal community funding activity including the in-store Community Token scheme and we’ve kick started our efforts to support local community groups and services during the current pandemic, by donating £75,000.

This initial donation has been made to the following groups, to support their excellent work:

Foodbanks

£45,000

This will be split across the 22 foodbanks in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex who we currently support.

 

This money will be used by these groups to secure food for those who need it most.

 

Age UK

£18,000

Shared by Age UK Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk.

 

Funding will be used to provide food and support to vulnerable older people across our region.

 

Community Foundations

£12,000

Shared amongst Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex Community Foundations local Coronavirus Response Funds.

This will help direct money to community groups who need it most as part of a
co-ordinated response.

This is just the start of the support we want to give. We want to help local community groups and charitable organisations adapt and adjust their services to meet the challenges they are facing. We are focusing particularly on the areas our members told us were important: supporting older people, helping young people to thrive and reducing food poverty.

How can I donate my divi?

You can donate some or all of your dividend to the East of England Community Cares Fund. If you have earned enough points to qualify for a dividend it will be sent to you in June. When it is delivered, it will include dividend vouchers and a pre-paid envelope.  Please use the pre-paid envelope to return the amount of dividend vouchers that you wish to donate to the Fund. 

We know that a lot of our members are keen to donate and we thank you sincerely in anticipation for your generosity.

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