By Kate Gilmore, Community Advisor – Campaign and Content  

When you buy selected Co-op branded products and services, 2p for every pound spent goes to you and we’ll give the same to local communities.

Our Local Community Fund supports projects across the UK that our members care about. Since 2016, our members have raised over £84m for over 25,000 causes by simply buying selected Co-op branded product and services.  

This year is going to be another challenging year for local causes and communities. With the cost of living rising dramatically already this year, charities are likely to bear the brunt of people being more conscious about their spending. That’s why initiatives like the Local Community Fund are so important.  

Make a difference  

By shopping with Co-op and selecting a local cause, you can support communities with:

  • better access to food
  • mental wellbeing support
  • opportunities for young people
  • protecting local biodiversity
  • tackling climate change

All these local causes are helping to build stronger, more resilient communities across the UK.  

If you know a cause making a difference in your community, encourage them to apply at coop.co.uk/causes by 29 May. We support beyond just funding. Groups will also join our online community centre, Co-operate. This can help them find volunteers, it offers how to guides and opportunities to gather further donations.  It’s free for everyone to use – even if their funding application is not successful.  

But don’t just take our word for it. Below we’ve highlighted three local causes that are currently benefitting from the support our Local Community Fund provides.  

The Reporters’ Academy – Manchester

The Reporter’s Academy is committed to improving the futures of vulnerable young people by delivering inspiring media training and employability workshops. The Local Community Fund helps the Academy offer new skills, confidence and networking to those whose pathways to enrichment opportunities have been blocked since the pandemic began.  

St Phillips Church – Derby

St.Phillips Church develop a welcoming, inclusive community space for a wide variety of activities and groups, to enable a holistic approach to wellbeing. This includes mental health, children and young people, adult learning skills, loneliness, finance/debt clinic, bereavement support, drop-in sessions, e.g. local councillors and local area coordinators. 

Food Troops CIC – Cornwall

Food Troops CIC are a group who wants to boost the health and wellbeing of the community by boosting cookery skills and eating habits and feeding those in need. The money raised by the Fund will help set up a community hub in Redruth where they will provide food education, cookery skills and equipment, food parcels to those in need alongside gardening activities in our community garden – allowing their community to grow, cook and thrive. 

When you log in to your account, you can support local causes within your local communities, or others from around the UK.

Choose a cause  

Through the Co-op App you can choose a new Local Community Fund cause to support whenever you buy Co-op branded products and services.   

If you aren’t already a member, make sure you join online before downloading the app for access to exclusive offers across our family of businesses.  

Volunteer through Co-operate 

You can also support your local community by volunteering though our online community centre, Co-operate.  

Co-operate connects you with groups that need help. You can use your time, skills and enthusiasm to make an impact in your community. And what’s more, it’s so easy to use. To help you get started, we’ve created this guide which provides you with everything you need to know about volunteering in your local community.