How to discover more about the Local Community Fund

Last updated: 29 April, 2022

Since 2016, Co-op members have raised over £85m for 30,000 local projects across the UK.

About the Local Community Fund

We support projects across the UK that our members care about. Every time members buy selected Co-op branded products and services, they support local projects and make a difference in their community.

We select 3 causes in each community to be part of the fund for 12 months. During that time, we’ll work together to help you raise as much money as possible.

Different to other funds

It’s more than just a fund, it’s a 12-month partnership.

Every time our members buy Co-op products and services during this period they are making a difference by raising money for a cause they care about. Unlike other funds, this is not distributed by coins or tokens.

Together, we’ll raise your profile in the community and encourage more Co-op members to raise money for your cause.

We do this by promoting the fund and our causes through Co-op communication channels. These include:

  • instore Co-op magazine

  • social media channels

  • radio, posters and screens in both Co-op food stores and funeral homes

  • emails to members

You can make the most of the partnership by:

  • encouraging your supporters to become Co-op members and support your cause

  • promoting your cause on social media using the resources we provide

  • engaging with your local Member Pioneer and Co-op colleagues

If you’re successful, you'll receive funds raised by our members in 1 payment in November 2023. 

Benefits of the fund

You’ll gain extra support to help you make the most difference in your community.

Online community centre, Co-operate

When you apply for the fund, you’ll join a network of over 12,000 groups. Co-operate can help you find volunteers, equipment and resources, as well as further donations.

Even if your funding application is not successful, Co-operate is always here to help.

Member Pioneers

We’ll introduce you to your local Member Pioneer. The person who can connect you with like-minded people and offer practical advice and help throughout the 12-month partnership.

Our network of over 1,000 Member Pioneers connects communities across the UK.

Colleague support

Over 60,000 colleagues live and work in local communities. They care about making a difference with you.

We received £3,000 from the Local Community Fund. During this time, we had support from our local Member Pioneer. Now Co-operate is raising our profile.

Rosa TrelfaPeer Talk, previous local cause

Projects we support

Your project must fit 1 of these categories.

Bring people together to access food

Examples include:

  • allotments or community gardens

  • cooking lessons and clubs

  • community fridges

  • community cafes, pantries and kitchens

  • holiday and breakfast clubs

Help improve people’s mental wellbeing

Examples include:

  • build social connections

  • bereavement support

  • emotional wellbeing support

  • mental wellbeing support like friendship groups

  • mental health support and services like counselling or therapy

  • sports and physical activities

Create opportunities for young people to be heard and make a difference

Examples include:

  • confidence building

  • employability skills

  • essential life skills

  • intergenerational skill sharing

  • social action and campaigning

  • volunteering projects

  • youth forums or groups

Help people protect local biodiversity or tackle climate change by reducing carbon emissions

Examples include:

  • community gardens

  • renewable energy schemes on a small scale

  • local rewilding projects

  • sustainable transport such as cycling projects

  • tree planting

Search for projects we’ve supported in your community 

We publish our grantmaking data in the open through the charity 360Giving. We do this to help improve charitable giving.

You can find out what projects we’ve supported, where they’re located and how much funding they received. To get started, visit 360Giving’s GrantNav tool.

Use the geography filter to refine your search to a specific country, region or district.

Apply

From 3 to 29 May, you can apply for the Local Community Fund.

Like most groups, we’ve had to fill in a lot of funding applications over the years, but this form was the easiest we’d ever used.

DebbieFounder of Little Sprouts health and wellbeing charity

Share your story

Do you have a story about how your community has come together to support each other?

We'd love to share your story on our website to encourage other people to get or offer support.

Share your story

Find things to do and groups that support your community