A grand total of £7,398.85 was distributed between six local causes at the Canton Co-op store, funded by the Co-op Community Fund scheme.

Co-op shoppers in Cardiff West raise £7,400 for good causes

Donations will help people ranging from allotment holders to members of a group for older people

A TOTAL of £7,398.85 has been distributed between six local causes across Cardiff West at an event at the Canton Co-op store.

The Community Fund scheme is funded directly by Co-op members. For every £1 members spent on Co-op branded products, 1p will go directly to a local cause and 1p will fund a national cause.

The Taff Community Allotment Group, one of the chosen local causes, received £2,446.92.

“The money raised by the Co-op is really a godsend,” said James Rides, organiser of the allotment group.

The money raised will be put towards building 36 new raised beds which will be used by homeless people.

“We’re inviting the homeless to come and we will teach them how to grow food and their produce will be turned into meals by local organisations,” said Mr Rides.

“It will keep the homeless safe, socialising with other growers and learning new skills.”

Located in Leckwith, the group was created to provide the tenants of Taff Housing on Cowbridge Road with allotments. It has now expanded with 32 families and individuals growing their own food.

The Taff Community Allotment Group holding a cheque for £2,466.92 raised by the Co-op Community Fund Scheme.

Another cause chosen by the Co-op shoppers was the Conway 50+ group, who received £2,309.27.

Despite its name, members of the Conway 50+ Group have an average age of 75. They meet every Wednesday at the Conway Road Church, said Margaret Taylor, a member of the group.

“It is a lovely hall that is very warm, has a good kitchen but most importantly it has access for the less-abled to get into the hall.”

The meetings, which last from 10.15am to 3pm, are attended by roughly 40 men and women each week.

“We’re greeted with a cup of tea or coffee and have some biscuits. We then have various speakers and various music groups to entertain us for 45 minutes to an hour. After they are finished, we have a light lunch of soup and a bread roll and that continues with some company in the warm surroundings of the hall,” said Mrs Taylor.

“The money we have asked for is to help us with taxi fares for people who come from areas outside Conway Road, Grangetown and further along in Pontcanna so that they can come to the meetings.”

The Conway 50+ club receiving £2,309.27 from Co-op shoppers

The Ely Garden Villagers, a community group which aims to keep the young people of Ely safe, also received £1,653.62.

Having set up a boxing group for the young people of Ely, it now wants to buy more equipment to “provide more opportunities to keep the children off the streets”.

The Ely Garden Villagers, whose name was given to them by the late Welsh Labour politician Rhodri Morgan who encouraged the group, also organise football and baseball sessions.

Their annual free firework display, which is attended by almost 3,000 people, has also been commended by the South Wales Police for dramatically reducing the levels of antisocial behaviour in Ely.

The Ely Garden Villagers also received £1,653.62 to help tackle anti-social behaviour.

Councillor Peter Bradbury, who is a member of the Co-op Council Innovation Network, also attended the presentation.

“This event is a really important reminder of the importance of the Co-operative movement,” he said.

“The common cause between these three groups is your community and collectivism and being a part of a wider movement to try and change and enhance people’s lives.”

“All three of you are worthy beneficiaries for this grant.”

Cylch Meithrin Trelai, Fairwater Football Club and Cardiff Civic Society also received funding but did not attend.

Since its formation in 2016, the Community Fund scheme has raised a total of £117m for communities across the United Kingdom.

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