A Southern Co-op food store in Freshwater is supporting a local nursery in Totland, Isle of Wight, for which it has raised £2,000.
The store organised two fundraising events and a mix of other activities, with teams from both centres taking part in them.
The West Wight Nursery provides a community nursery for children between the ages of three months to 12 years. Last year the nursery, a charity, was targeted by thieves who stole its gardening tools. At the time, Southern Co-op’s food and funeralcare branches in Freshwater made a joint contribution of £1,500 to help the nursery replace the stolen tools.
Neil Riley, store manager at Freshwater, said: “Back in October, we joined up with a few of our sister stores and funeral branches to raise enough money to replace the stolen equipment. It was then that our colleagues here saw how special they are and decided to partner up with them for a whole year.
“We are so glad we did as it has already been so much fun. We held a charity children’s party the other week which was a fantastic evening and very well supported by the parents and children from the nursery.
“We had a DJ, face painting, games, food, drinks and lots and lots of dancing. We raised over £400 in the end but more importantly for us we got to meet and socialise with families from our community. We really had a great time.”
A total of 11 nursery and store colleagues also competed in a 5k inflatable run.
Kim Tyrell, manager at the West Wight Nursery, said: “I just want to say just how grateful we are for the support of Southern Co-op and their colleagues who have been integral in supporting our fundraising efforts.
“They have supported the food and DJ for our kiddies disco, a successful bucket shake and bag pack in store, and the fun group effort for the 5k race, which Southern Co-op helped with transport costs.
“They are all just so willing to help out and I don’t think the community realises quite how much the stores do for charity. We are so grateful.”
The fundraising activities for part of Southern Co-op’s community engagement programme ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’, which aims to address four key social themes for promoting: ‘Greener’, ‘Healthier’, ‘Safer’, and ‘More Inclusive’ neighbourhoods.