Co-op stores donate £170k to local charities after fundraising for 12 months

Lauderdale House director Katherine Ives collects a cheque from local Co-op store managers Sai Thava

Lauderdale House director Katherine Ives collects a cheque from local Co-op store managers Sai Thavapalan and Steve Ognwalu. Picture: Polly Hancock - Credit: Archant

Highgate’s Lauderdale House played host to a “heartwarming” series of charity presentations on Saturday as the Co-op handed out more than £170,000 to a range of north London charities.

As part of the Co-operative group’s community fund initiative, the last 12 months have seen a proportion of money spent at local stores put aside for good causes.

It works by collecting 1 per cent of money spent by Co-op members or on Co-op branded goods.

One of the beneficiaries was Lauderdale House itself, which was presented with more than £15,000.

This money has already helped subsidise the free concerts that took place over the summer on the lawns at Lauderdale.

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Director Katherine Ives said: “It was a really great day to thank the Co-op. I find it so remarkable how the money from each transaction adds up – £170,000 is just incredible.”

The Co-op’s north London stores are the only ones to hold a presentation event, and Katherine told this newspaper this was a huge bonus.

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She added: “It was lovely to hold an event like that. We got to meet some of the really lovely store managers, not to mention all of the other charities.

“I think it was a special chance to talk to each other and celebrate volunteering to make our area better.”

The money given to Lauderdale House was raised by Co-op’s Archway stores, who raised almost £50,000. It was split with Sunnyside Community Gardens in Islington and the Friends of St John’s.

Rebecca Birkbeck, who runs community engagement e Co-op, said: “Since the launch of the local community fund our members have helped 12,000 organisations to make a positive difference in their neighbourhoods, and in the last 12 months alone we have invested £19m in local causes.

“The fund is now supporting a wide variety of local organisations, from village halls and support groups to education providers and neighbourhood watch schemes, all of which are helping make north London a better, happier, and healthier place to live.”

Other charities to benefit included Caris Camden, Kentish Town City Farm, the North London Hospice, the Camden Bereavement Service and Hilldrop Peace Garden.

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