Derbyshire based Long Eaton Rugby Club have been awarded over £5,000 as part of the Co-op Community Fund, which will go towards helping local children to stay fit and active.

The grand total of £5,496, which was presented to club members at Long Eaton’s Grasmere Road and College Street stores recently, is made up of 1% of customer spend on own-brand products over the past 12 months. 

After applying for the Community Fund in August 2018, the club was selected by Co-op members as one of the three projects that would benefit from the money raised between the period of November 2018-October 2019. After being contacted by College Street store Manager, Trevor, at the end of this fundraising period, rugby club members were astonished to receive the news of the grand total it would be awarded.

Graham Hockley, Treasurer at Long Eaton Rugby, applied for the fund on behalf of the club. He said: “When Trevor got in touch to say our club would be the beneficiaries of over £5,400, I was completely shocked and delighted; never in our wildest dreams did we think we would receive such a brilliant amount.”

Long Eaton Rugby will use the money raised by Co-op customers to provide extra-curricular fitness sessions in local schools for children to improve their health, fitness and self-esteem and to provide a fun and safe environment to learn new skills and make friends. The money will fund venues, marketing, coaching and equipment for fun rugby sessions in primary and secondary schools across Long Eaton and the wider area.

Graham continued: “The money is a huge boost for the rugby club and the community as a whole. With this funding, we hope to encourage hundreds of children to take part in physical activity at a young age, to help incorporate fitness into their daily routine and more importantly, make it something they enjoy. The sessions we are planning to develop will not only improve physical skills but support inclusivity with young people with Special Educational Needs in our area, helping them to develop their inter-personal social skills and encourage team working and long-lasting friendships. We are so grateful to The Co-op and its generous customers for making our dream a reality by selecting us for this fund.”

A cheque for the total amount was awarded to members of the Rugby Club on Saturday 23rd November as part of ‘The Big Co-op Payout’, where a total of £17 million was awarded to causes and organisations across the country to support local projects.


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