Scotmid Co-operative grants £75,000 to Scottish charities

Launched last year, the Community Connect scheme enables members to vote for good cause groups in their local region

Nine more charities across Scotland will be benefiting from funding from Scotmid Co-op through its Community Connect programme.

Launched last year, the scheme enables members to vote for good cause groups in their local region, with up to £15,000 funding awarded every six months to the charity that earns the most votes.

The latest round of funding distributed £75,000 generated from the sale of single-use carrier bags.

In the North Member region, Laurencekirk Memorial Park was awarded £15,000 for improvements including a unisex, disabled access toilet.

Peter Reid of Laurencekirk Memorial Park said: “This is fantastic news … and the funding will help us to bring our plans to life, so thanks to all the Scotmid members, who voted for us – it will make a massive difference to our local area.”

St Andrew’s Hospice, in the West Region, was awarded £15,000. The charity, which provides specialist palliative care to patients with life limiting illnesses in Lanarkshire, will buy a new minibus to take patients to their outpatient appointments, which include physiotherapy, complimentary therapy and adult bereavement counselling.

St Andrew’s Lorna McCafferty said: “Thanks so much to Scotmid and its members for awarding us £15,000 funding through Community Connect – it is an incredible boost to our centre.”

In its East Region, Scotmid awarded £15,000 to Blood Bikes Scotland, a charity providing professional, free and urgent courier service to Lothian and Borders hospitals and trusts. The group is supported by a small team of volunteers who provide the service outside of normal office hours – delivering urgent medical supplies, blood samples, baby milk, medication or test samples to A&E departments, wards and home addresses. The £15,000 received from Scotmid will allow them to purchase a new motorbike and expand their service into the Fife area.

Chair of Blood Bikes Scotland, John Baxter, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled … Special thanks to all the Scotmid members who voted for us – it will make a significant difference.”

Scotmid president, Harry Cairney, said: “Congratulations to all the Community Connect award winners.

“As a society, our core purpose is to serve our local communities and improve people’s everyday lives and Community Connect helps us to achieve those goals.

“The way Community Connect works is that is our members, who shop in our stores and live in our communities, ultimately decide where the awards go.

“It is certainly one of the best initiatives Scotmid has ever done and we’re excited to see it continue to develop and strengthen our connection with local charities and our members.”

Other groups also received funding from the society. East Lothian’s Harlawhill Day Care Centre, Lanark’s Esteem Clydesdale and Pillar Kincardine were awarded £7,500 in their respective regions, while West Lothian’s Broxburn Family Centre, Equitots Lanarkshire Interest Company and Inverness Foodstuff was granted £2,500.

The Scotmid Co-operative also runs a Community Grant programme through which community groups can receive grants of up to £500. Over 1,000 were awarded such grants in 2017.

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