Communities

Supporting communities to come together to Co-operate.

Co-operate Report 2020

Support for communities is embedded in our values and principles. It's what sets us apart. Now more than ever, we’re seeing a need and appetite for a more co-operative approach. One that addressed inequalities and finds new ways to tackle issues together through co-operation.

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Our Report

Download the communities Report section or the full Report to read more about our work in this area:

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Our Community Plan

Insights from our Community Wellbeing Index, members, colleagues and causes has helped us understand what communities need and how we can have the greatest impact.

In 2020 we identified 3 interrelated community missions:

  • Fair Access to Food - Building a sustainable approach to tackling food Insecurity within our communities
  • Fair Access to Mental Wellbeing Support - Supporting our colleagues and our communities to access mental wellbeing support
  • Fair Access to Education and Employment for young people - enabling young people to be heard, make a difference and access opportunities

Our achievements have been recognised by the Corporate Covid Comms Awards, who awarded us 'Best Community Initiative' for an organisation who has best adapted a community programme in response to Covid-19.

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Helping communities to Co-operate across the UK

We're delivering our missions through our community assets and programmes.

We’re doubling what goes to local causes and community organisations, when our members shop with us.

The funds raised by our members will be split two ways:

  • we’ll continue to support thousands of grassroots community causes through the  Local Community Fund, where members can select which cause in their local community to support
  • through the new  Community Partnerships Fund creating lasting change on big issues we care about, targeting communities that need the extra help the most

In 2020:

  • We raised over £3m for Mind, SAMH and Inspire to fund new mental wellbeing services

  • There were 1,000 Member Pioneers and Member Pioneer Coordinators based in communities across the UK

  • 90,000 Member Pioneer hours have been invested in UK communities

Member Pioneers

Member Pioneers make great things happen in our communities. They are the boots on the ground, working together with our Co-operate platform, other Co-op colleagues, members and local causes to bring our community plan to life and make our communities better places to work, play, live and learn.

Co-operate platform

We want to amplify the good things happening in local communities, making it easier to connect with others and get stuff done. Co-operate is our online platform that pulls together local events and activities to create one place for people to go to make things happen in their local community.

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The Co-op Foundation

The Co-op Foundation is our charity. It helps people challenge inequality and co-operate for change so they can share a fairer future.

Co-op Academies

The Co-op Academies Trust provides an education based on co-operative values and principles for over 17,000 young people. It’s our Vision to provide fairer access to education as well as to inspire a new generation of high-achieving, ambitious, skilled and confident co-operators.

Colleague support for communities

We encourage all colleagues to play an active role in the community, whether volunteering through the Co-operate platform, running or participating in community projects, or taking part in social action.

  • 26 Academy Schools in the Co-op Academies Trust (24 in 2019)

  • £15m given to over 4,500 local community projects in 2020

  • Over 183,000 visits to the Co-operate platform.

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