Community spirit - do you have it? The Cooperative Community Fund certainly does - in spades. When I got the email to ask me to write about this I didn't really have to think twice. I already bank with The Cooperative - a bank with a conscience, and we shop there regularly. It really is a society that gives something back big style to your local community. However I hadn't quite appreciated just how much they give back to society and the diverse range of projects they support. And all of this is funded through those members who chose to tick the box that says pays my dividend into community projects rather than pocket the money themselves. Bravo I say. After all would you really miss the dividend anyway?
So what qualifies as a community project? Does this mean that you have to have charitable status? Apparently not. However it must carry out positive work on a long term basis, it should address a community issue, be of a long term benefit and address the Coopeartive Community Fund principles and values as well as being innovative in its approach.
Having had gander at the other offerings in my areas I'm wondering whether to propose my sons's local rugby club. It is one of the few clubs that operate a scheme to reach out into the community and get children from less well off areas to get involved, It is the most ethnically diverse club in the area and has representation at every age group. However it is in competition with other more successful clubs in the area who have swanky club houses and excellent facilities whereas our club is sadly lacking here. I think I will have to pass this on to our chairman and see if he can make a successful application.
See a pic of Ann Hayes and her project
I've been toying with the idea of becoming a member and I think this might have just swung it for me with my share of the pie going to other worthwhile causes. Clearly if they have an action group that supports scrummy mummies * cough, who are laid up with a pot leg and cant drive all the better. So what are you waiting for? It's a good time of year to be thinking about community and what we can all do to help.
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