Last year Bob Leeves and Alison Warner, Locality Manager and Assistant Locality Manager for the Out There West Sussex community preventative service, submitted a funding application to the Co-operative Stores Community Fund.
This is an annual funding stream that chooses 3 local charities and similar organisations to support who facilitate services and activities that benefit the local community. Customers of the shop who have membership cards are able to choose a cause that they want to support and when they do their shopping a small amount of the cost is donated to that organisation. Also a proportion of the plastic bag sales are side lined for the same causes.
Out There actively promoted the scheme and asked people to choose them as their preferred charity and they had a good response. Over the year Out There received regular updates from the Co-op on progress made on the current total which was very helpful but were staggered at the end of the year to find out that an amazing £5,462.91 had been raised!
Bob says “We can’t thank the Co-op and their customers enough for the support we have received from them. This scheme is easy to sign up to and we have been invited to apply again next March which we will definitely do. Going along to the store also gave Alison and myself the opportunity not only to thank people but also highlight the work we are doing in the community to make it more disability accessible and raise awareness around the issues the people we support face on a daily basis. This programme is very focused on supporting local communities and has assisted many charities and organisations to raise much needed money over the years”
Out There is pro-actively looking at options to become more self-sustainable and will continue to build partnerships with local businesses and work on projects that engage the local community.