Co-op community dividend winners

Members of three local groups were handed giant cheques at Beeston Co-op last month.

The three: Better Action For Families, St Mary’s Church Beeston and Crossroads Youth Club had all applied for a share of the £5,660.82 raised by Co-op members in the store over the last six months.

Winners from BAFF, St Mary’s Beeston and Crossroads with staff at Beeston Co-op

Food store managers Gary and Malcolm, plus Kelly from Co-op Funeralcare were on hand to award the cheques and pass round the seasonal mince pies. Kelly explained that when members buy Co-op brands in store they recive a 5% ‘divi’ and a further 1% goes towards funding good causes locally.

“We are delighted, that with the help of our members, we have been able to hand out over £5,000 today. These groups do fantastic work for our community and we are delighted to be able to help them do more.” she said

Better Action For Families (BAFF) run activities for people with learning disabilities and their families. Sessions include special exercise classes, social, walking and gardening groups.

Their grant of £1,863.05 will help run more trips and support their work in breaking down stigma and the issues that flow from that: poor physical and mental health, unemployment and poverty.

St Mary’s Church in Beeston originally applied as part of their fundraising to repair the church clock. When Save Our Beeston helped them reach their clock target, they asked the Co-op if their grant of £1,937.31 could be used for other similar projects to improve the appearance of what is a community building – Beeston’s Parish Church.

The third group to receive funds was Crossroads Youth Club which runs every Monday in Middleton. Father Andy Myers explained how they will use their £1,860.46:

“We teach children between the ages of 8 and 13 how to cook, in a clean, safe, and healthy way. Pressures on families can lead to a poor diet. All our cooking sessions are “hands on” that is the children themselves handle hot burners, scalding liquids and sharp knives, rather than watch someone else show them. Paid staff lead the session.”