East of England Co-op donates £1,000 to Emmaus after van was vandalised

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The East of England Co-op have donated £1,000 to homeless charity Emmaus after their company van was the subject of criminal damage.

Emmaus Suffolk work to support people at risk of homelessness in rebuilding their lives through peer support, training and education. Overnight on the 22 June, their van, used to provide services for vulnerable people across the county, had all six of its tyres slashed. The East of England Co-op have stepped in to support the charity in donating £1,000 to help with repairs and lost income while the van was out of action. Two other local businesses, John Grose and Dave Chapman Ltd., supported the charity too.

Commenting on the donation, Kat Reading, Community Development Manager at the East of England Co-op said: “Being a co-operative is all about supporting the local community, and we are glad to have been able to offer support to Emmaus after this horrible incident. Emmaus is a charity we have supported previously and we know first-hand how important their work is in the local community.”

Claire Staddon, CEO of Emmaus Suffolk said: “We are grateful for the relationship we have with the East of England Co-op and the support they continue to show us, especially in time of need. We have been staggered at the generosity of our local community and are so grateful to everyone who has helped us to get the van back in action in 24 hours.”

Creating safe, motivating environments and opportunities for those facing the prospect of homelessness is the focus behind the work that Emmaus do. This includes opening hubs for like-minded people to visit and be supported, setting up a cookery club courtesy of the East of England Co-op’s Community Cares Fund, and opening their Community House for those who need a place to call home, are just a handful of examples of the difference they make.

The donation to Emmaus comes as the East of England Co-op is celebrating Co-op Fortnight, an annual event which recognises co-operatives across the UK. Organised by the group Co-operatives UK, the fortnight runs from 20 June to 3 July. This year’s theme is #UnwrapCoops and highlights the difference co-operatives make to people’s lives.