Our Community Dividend Fund has been repurposed to provide immediate financial support for good causes, groups and charities helping communities deal with the impact of the Coronavirus.
Normally, grants from the fund are handed out four times a year to a wide range of organisations but, during the next few months, it has been decided to hand grants out on a monthly basis to support those suffering financial hardship due to the pandemic and others looking to step in to help those affected.
Grants range from £100 to £5,000 and are available to full members of Central England Co-op in the following areas: West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.
Jim Watts, Society Secretary, said: “In response to the current crisis, we have made some changes to our Community Dividend Fund scheme to provide immediate financial support for local good causes, community groups and charities who are responding to some of the most worrying impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Many charities and organisations are suffering financial hardship due to the pandemic - incomes have fallen, demand has risen.
“In particular, we know that providing the basics including food has become a challenge for many people. Isolation and lack of access to normal services means that mental health and wellbeing is a growing concern.
“We particularly welcome applications from organisations that are meeting needs in these areas.
“Community Dividend Fund grants 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 – especially during uncertain times like these.”
To apply, members will need: name, address, membership number, organisation type, organisation bank account or constitution and to explain what the group does, how the grant will be spent and the specific impact it will have related to COVID-19.
People can find out the full criteria and how to apply for funding by visiting https://communities.centralengland.coop/