Groups make pitch for your Co-op cash

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The three recipients of this year’s Co-op Community Fund visited the Brodick store last Saturday to tell shoppers what they do and how they intend to use the funds.

The selected charities are Arran Cancer Support (ArCaS), Brodick Improvements Committee (BIC) and Arran High School Mountain Bike Club (AHSMTBC).

One per cent of the amount customers spend on selected own brand products and services and the sale of shopping bags goes into the Co-op Community Fund which is donated to selected charities every year.

Co-op members can select which charity their contribution will support by going online or by calling 08000 234708. Last year Mary Davis Trust, Cats Protection Arran and Brodick Nursery received a share of almost £40,000.

Speaking at the event, Bill Calderwood, on behalf of BIC, said: ‘Brodick Improvements Committee is grateful to Liz and Carol and the Co-op for the opportunity to raise funds to develop and retain many features around the village which benefit residents and the many guests to Arran who visit the village.

‘Additional funds will help retain public services, brighten up the village with the annual planting which is expanding and work to protect the village green and footpaths which are popular.

‘In winter, we hope to expand the Christmas tree decorations and are considering other features to promote Brodick and Arran as a welcoming community.’

Robert McNeice of AHSMTBC explained what it hopes to achieve with additional funding. He said: ‘With funding from the Co-op Community Fund, the club intends to buy a minibus and trailer. This will enable us to take our voluntary trail and bike maintenance projects to more island communities in addition to making the most of Arran’s amazing outdoor spaces with regular mini adventures on bikes.’

ArCaS will use the funds to continue with their travel, well-being and nurse support they offer to those on Arran affected by cancer.

Shop manager Lisa Remmington said: ‘Thanks to everyone who stopped to chat today and huge thanks to Liz Mclean and her wonderful staff for making space and time for us.

‘More than £1,000 has already been raised by Co-op shoppers for ArCaS. Whoever you choose for your reward, they really appreciate it.’

Manager Liz McLean, who manages both Brodick Co-op stores, said: ‘We are delighted to be helping all of these great causes which cover a wide spectrum of charities on Arran. Thanks to all of our members, we can help make a real difference in our community.

‘I would urge everyone to sign up to be a Co-op member. The more members that take part, the more the community benefits. Thank you to all our members and customers for helping us to give back.’

Last year the Co-op Community Fund donated £17 million to more than  4,000 local causes in the UK. Members also receive five per cent of what they spend on selected own brand items to spend in store when using their Co-op card.

Carol Harwood of the Co-op speaks with members of Brodick Improvements Committee during their visit. 01_B11CCF01

Kirsten Nicholson, assistant manager of the ArCaS shop in Brodick, spoke to shoppers about the work the charity does for those whose lives are affected by cancer. 01_B11CCF02

Co-op manager Liz McLean gives Robert McNeice and Kim Toogood of the mountain bike club a helping hand. 01_B11CCF03