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Powered by membership

Our work in communities is powered by membership and concern for the community is embedded in our Values and Principles. These things together are what set us apart.

Insights from our Community Wellbeing Index, along with listening to members, colleagues and causes, help us understand what communities need and the areas we can have the greatest impact.

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Our community plan

Our community plan focuses on three 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

We’ve doubled the size of the UK’s Community Fridge Network from 100 to 200 locations through our partnership with Hubbub

We’ve raised £7 million for Mind, SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Wellbeing) and Inspire, providing 50 new services supporting mental wellbeing across UK communities

£1.6 million pledged in our partnership with the Youth Endowment Fund (YEF) and the #iwill Fund helping 6,400 young people to make their communities safer, fairer places to live

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Putting community at the heart of membership

We’re delivering our missions through our community assets and programmes. When Co-op members buy selected Co-op branded products and services, they get 2p back for every pound spent and the same goes to local communities.

The funds raised by our members are split between supporting our:

  • Local Community Fund, helping thousands of grassroots community causes
  • Community Partnerships Fund, creating lasting change on big issues we care about in local communities

£13.5m given to over 4,500 local community projects

1 million cause selections by members for the second year running

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Member pioneers

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

1,000 Member Pioneers and Member Pioneer Co-ordinators based in communities across the UK

100,000 hours invested in UK communities in 2021

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Co-operate, our online community centre

Co-operate brings people together to make good things happen in communities. Anyone can use Co-operate for free. 13,500 groups and activities, and counting, are connecting with people across the UK, helping to empower more people to ‘Co-operate for a fairer world’.

Whether they want to join a group or activity, volunteer or set up their own – it’s for people who care about their community and want to join forces to get things done.

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 their ambition to provide fairer access to education, as well as to inspire a new generation of high-achieving, ambitious, skilled and confident co-operators.

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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. In 2021, the Foundation formalised its commitment to be a flexible grantmaker.

Committed to more than £366,000 of flexible, emergency grants to Foundation partners to help them overcome the effects of Covid

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