Central England Co-op donates special footballs to budding soccer stars to ‘kick off’ Fairtrade Fortnight celebrations

Lichfield-based Central England Co-operative has kicked off its celebrations for Fairtrade Fortnight 2019 by making a special donation to a nearby junior football team.

The Society has donated 12 Bala Play Fairtrade Footballs for Lichfield Wildcats Under 10s Girls Football team, based at Lichfield City FC, in Brownsfield Road.

The striking footballs are ethically made to Fairtrade standards so are produced by workers who get a fair deal.

The footballs have been donated by the Western Membership and Community Council (MCC) and James Knight, Member and Community Relations Officer at Central England Co-op, said donating the Bala balls was a great way of supporting the local community while also educating about Fairtrade.

He said: “The Co-operative has a long tradition of giving back to the community and we also welcome the opportunity to educate young people about Fairtrade and ethical practices, so being able to donate these Fairtrade footballs give us a great chance to do both those things.

“As well as donating the footballs we also gave out Co-op Fairtrade bananas to the team and explained where both of these products were sourced from and what makes them ethically produced.

“It is a pleasure to link-up with the Lichfield Wildcats and I thank them for their interest in Fairtrade. It’s a fantastic way to kick-off our Fairtrade Fortnight celebrations as an organisation.”

Gareth Downie, manager of the Lichfield Wildcats Under 10s, said: “The team are thrilled with the new footballs and I’m sure they will get plenty of use. We would like to thank Central England Co-op for this kind donation which has been doubly rewarding as I know the link-up has really opened the girls’ eyes about Fairtrade and what that means for producers.”

Fairtrade Fortnight is taking place from 25 February to 10 March and sees thousands of individuals, companies and groups across the UK come together to celebrate the people who grow food, people who live in some of the poorest countries in the world and who are often exploited and badly paid.

Central England Co-op is marking the campaign with a range of events across the 16 counties it covers from tea dances to school assemblies and workshops, to raise awareness of Fairtrade and the range of ethically-sourced products it stocks in its Food Stores.

You can find out more about Fairtrade Fortnight at Central England Co-op here https://www.centralengland.coop/food/fairtrade-fortnight

A Fairtrade Foundation video telling the story behind Fairtrade Footballs can be found here https://youtu.be/wTrFOLLvlGs


Notes to editors

About Central England Co-operative

Central England Co-operative is one of the largest independent retail co-operative societies in the UK. 

It is a modern, forward-looking organisation employing over 8,000 staff, with the Society’s principal areas of activity being food, funeral services, travel shops, and property investment.

Central England Co-operative has over 400 trading outlets across 16 counties including; West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.  The Society has an ambitious food store development programme for 2019.

Central England Co-operative is proud of its reputation for ethical business practices and corporate responsibility.  It is a member of Business in the Community, the membership organisation that stands for responsible business, and has also won many business awards for excellence.  The Society supports a number of charities including Dementia UK and invests a percentage of its trading profit into local communities.

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 members@centralengland.coop or visiting https://www.members.coop

For more information visit www.centralengland.coop, follow Central England Co-operative on Twitter: @mycoopfood, and on Facebook: facebook.com/centralenglandcooperative

Rob Smyth and James Brindle at Central England Co-operative on 01543 421390

Email – publicrelations@centralengland.coop