Through our “Making a Difference” Community Dividend we redistribute 1% of our trading profit in the form of grants to local community groups across our trading area for projects such as improving school playgrounds, restoring church halls, buying special needs equipment, sporting activities, creating educational resources, building kitchen facilities and much more.
There are many other ways we work with and help support our communities:
Our food bank policy has been developed in response to an increasing number of requests to support the good work these organisations do in local communities. In addition to having permanent collection points in over 60 of our food stores, we also hold quarterly awareness events when food banks are invited into stores to talk to local people about the important work they do, recruit volunteers and request donations from a shopping list of food items.
Our members and customers can help to support families in real need by donating an item of food to a food bank. This could be an item brought from home or at their weekly shop at any store.
Central England Co-operative works with the local Job Centre Plus’ to provide opportunities for unemployed people to take part in a recruitment process which will give them the best chance of being offered a job with the Society.
Our aim is to have 20% of NEET's* attending our Journey to a Job programmes secure permanent employment within six months by 2017 and remove barriers to work by developing a sustainable work experience model for 400 students with learning difficulties or from disadvantaged backgrounds by 2018.
* NEET’s: 16-24 year olds Not in Education Employment or Training
As part of Central England Co-operative’s responsible business focus on improving waste reduction and encouraging sustainable behaviour in the environment, our aim is to have a positive impact on the attitudes and behaviour of local people when it comes to reducing food and drink waste. You can watch the Birmingham launch here.
We are delivering free healthy choices workshops designed to help educate and engage school students on food waste prevention. For more information on our upcoming visits to schools, visit our new Your Food Your Waste website, or click here to learn more about the effects of food waste on the environment.