Skegness groups could benefit from community cash

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From lunch clubs and health groups to brownies and junior sports teams; good causes are being encouraged to apply to benefit from a fundraising scheme.

Lincolnshire Co-op’s Community Champions initiative sees thousands of pounds given away every three months to local charities and good causes. So far more than £244,000 has been shared by over 380 groups including 45 in the East Lincolnshire area, including Skegness.

Each dividend card holder is linked to a good cause near to where they live. Every time the member shops in a Lincolnshire Co-op outlet, a donation from the Community Champions pot goes to that good cause.

The groups change every three months so lots of organisations can benefit and Lincolnshire Co-op is now looking for applications for its next round of champions.

Member engagement manager Richard Whittaker said:“It’s a great chance for charities and community groups to get a fundraising boost. It’s simple to apply to be a Community Champion. Groups just have to fill out a short form and if they’re chosen, they’ll be able to raise hundreds of pounds.

“The more our members shop in our outlets, the more the Community Champions raise, so if a charity or group rallies their supporters the total could be even more.”

Skegness Hospital Watch is one of the groups supported as a Community Champion between March and June 2014. They raised £827.52 to go towards purchasing medical equipment for Skegness Hospital.

Campaign manager Geoff Poulter said that the money had been invaluable. He added: “It went towards buying a 24-hour heart monitoring machine which the hospital in Skegness didn’t have.

“The man who’s had it fitted is 80 years old and would otherwise have had to make regular 45 mile round trips to Boston, so it’s made his life so much easier.”

Groups who want to be considered as a Community Champion need to apply by Friday, September 26. For more on the Community Champions scheme and how to apply, visit Lincolnshire Co-op’s website www.lincolnshire.coop/communitychampions or pick up a form in your nearest store.