Co-operating with communities during the Coronavirus crisis

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We’re writing to you because we believe you’re involved with organising a local community group. As such, we think you will have contacts with people in your local community who may need support, and others who may be in a position to provide support. We’d be grateful if you would help share our message.

The problem and how Co-op can help

Community is at the heart of our Co-op. We know that there is a lot of great work that government, NHS, Royal Voluntary Service and others are already doing. We are working with these organisations and others on how best to support our communities across the UK.

We’ve identified four areas that we can help with right now, which link with what we do as a Co-op:

Supporting vulnerable customers with food 

Getting access to food is critical and we are committed to ensuring nobody goes without. We are supporting our Academy students with a £20 voucher up until the end of Easter and providing a mechanism for other schools eligible for free school meals across the UK.

We’ll be showing our support for all NHS and other key workers through #clapforourcarers, taking place at 8pm each Thursday.

Over the next 10 weeks we’ll be donating £1.5m worth of products to Fareshare who work with 11,000 charities, community groups and foodbanks.

Securing funding

Access to financial support will be vital to enable charities to continue the great work they do in communities. Co-op are supporting the National Emergency Trust (NET) Appeal, encouraging people to raise funds for those effected by the recent outbreak. NET will work with 46 foundations and charities to support local communities across the UK. You can make a donation here.

In addition, through our Local Community Fund and thanks to our members, we’re delivering £4.5m to over 4,500 local causes across the UK.

The Co-op Foundation, Co-op’s Charity, has pledged flexibility and has offered an immediate six month ‘repayment holiday’ to all community groups.

Keeping connected

We may be apart but that doesn’t mean we can’t help each-other. We’ve built a place to go online called Co-operate to help people do this, with online classes and activities, as well as relevant schemes or organisations providing support. You can find out more about Co-operate here.

Within our stores, people can use the acts of kindness postcodes to help their local neighbour in need.

Finding volunteers

Now more than ever we need people in our communities to support each other. Over 700 Co-op Member Pioneers are digitally connected in their communities joining Covid-19 Mutual Aid groups but also sharing key resources, such as Co-operate.

If you need help, or you believe you have help to give, please visit our Co-operate site.

Kind Regards,

Jasmine Chandler

Administration Assistant

Co-op Estate Planning

Office: 0161 256 9042

Estateplanning.coop.co.uk