Thirty groups share over £50,000 in funding from our Community Dividend Fund

Posted by Rob Smyth | 03/10/2017 | Category: Community

Thirty charities and groups have unwrapped an early Christmas present after sharing over £50,000 in the latest payout from Central England Co-operative’s Community Dividend Fund.

A diverse range of projects picked from across 16 counties have been handed funding, with the largest single amount given being £5,000.

The Padley Group, in Derby, has been handed the highest amount possible to pay for a suite of iPads to help homeless and disabled people in a variety of ways.

Jane Sandall, development centre manager, said: “You cannot imagine what a difference it will make to the classroom environment and I am so excited about the imaginative work that can now be created by some of our learners that struggle to use some of the regular art medium.

Gartmore Riding School, based in Hall Lane, Hammerwich, will use a grant of over £2,000 to buy a raft of new equipment ranging from soft mats that will allow disabled riders to be seated on the floor alongside able bodied riders to safety equipment such as hats and boots.

Tracy Francis, from the school, said: “Gartmore Riding School is delighted to receive funding from Central England Co-op Community Dividend Fund.

“The group promotes and encourages riding, horse care and stable management for children and adults with physical, emotional and psychological disability. “

Nottinghamshire Independent Domestic Abuse Services provides direct support to children, young people and families who have experienced some form of domestic violence and abuse.

The organisation have been handed a total of £4,890 to help raise awareness of the vital work that it does across schools, colleges and businesses.

Nearly £5,000 will be spent on installing two sensory gardens for good causes in Birmingham.

Nene Park Trust, in Peterborough, has been handed £1,700 to support a project that will see the launch of a plant production nursery that will allow volunteers to grow their own plants from seeds and cuttings.

Head of fundraising Adrian Oates said: “We are thrilled to receive this grant from Central England Co-operative Community Dividend Fund.”

Woodside Animal Centre RSPCA Leicestershire Branch used its £1,000 grant  to pay for dog agility equipment to help rehabilitate and exercise the animals.

Rebecca Lewis, from the centre, said: “This equipment is a vital part of our community programme throughout Leicestershire and Rutland.

“Our dog agility demonstrations help raise awareness of the centre and it also help us to promote responsible pet ownership in the community by encouraging members of the public to bond with and exercise their dogs outdoors.”

Other groups to receive funding include schools, pre-schools, Scout groups, and football teams.

Grants of between £100 and £5,000 are handed out every three months to a wide range of applicants.

The fund guarantees that at least one per cent of the Society’s trading profit is reinvested in local communities in a bid to help projects to thrive across its trading area of 16 counties from the Midlands to the East Coast.

Martyn Cheatle, Chief Executive of Central England Co-operative, said: “The Community Dividend reflects a key principle of our society, in that we reward the loyalty of our customers by investing in and supporting local communities.

 “I would like to urge all of our members to get in touch and put forward a community cause close to their heart for the Community Dividend scheme.”

People can apply for funding by heading online and visiting

Becoming a member of Central England Co-operative offers a whole host of benefits ranging from collecting points every time you spend in store to earn a share of the profits, access to members activities and community initiatives including the Community Dividend Fund, which hands out grants of up to £5,000 to charities and good causes across the Society’s trading estate.

Find out how to become a Central England Co-operative member by calling 0800 0501 601, emailing or visiting

About The Author: Rob Smyth

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Promoting the great work of Central England Co-operative across all forms of media.