Caring Heart of England Co-operative Society shoppers in both Coventry and Rugby have voted for young residents of the YMCA in both towns to receive a share of £25,000.
The charity, which operates three sites in Coventry and one in Rugby, was one of 14 causes across the Society’s trading area of Coventry, Warwickshire, south Leicestershire and Northamptonshire to receive a share of the money from the sales of the retailer’s carrier bags during the latter half of 2018.
With the second highest number of votes in both Coventry and Rugby, the charity secured two lots of funding from the scheme.
The money will be used in various ways to benefit young YMCA residents in both towns.
In Rugby, residents at Lucas House in Craven Road will receive a new sofa and TV in their communal area, and there will be free sanitary products for female residents as the YMCA works to tackle period poverty.
Female residents across the YMCA’s three sites in Coventry – Daimler Green and Bishopsgate in Radford, and St Margaret’s in Stoke – will also benefit from free sanitary products.
The rest of the money will be used towards combating holiday hunger, providing lunches for those attending daytime youth sessions at the YMCA over the summer.
Working with 16 to 25-year-olds who would otherwise be homeless, the YMCA Coventry and Warwickshire provides accommodation and offers tailored advice, guidance and personal development opportunities as it enables its young people to transform their lives and move towards independence. It also delivers youth work sessions targeted in areas of high deprivation in Coventry.
Jennie Evans, Director of Communications, said: “We are delighted with the money raised for the YMCA Coventry and Warwickshire and want to thank everyone for their support. We will be using the donations to provide practical support to our young residents and the young people who attend our youth sessions, to help them to build a better life.”
Jo Dyke, Community and Membership Adviser of the Heart of England Co-operative Society, said: “The YMCA provides an invaluable service to young people in Coventry and Rugby who without such a support network might otherwise find themselves on the street and without a place to live and without the support to get back on their feet.
“The work of the 21-strong team has clearly been recognised by our customers who have secured the charity two lots of funding in both Coventry and Rugby, benefiting some of the most vulnerable young people in both towns.”
She added: “We are delighted to support the YMCA in its quest to give guidance and expertise to each and every one of its residents, giving them an opportunity to help them move forward and turn their lives around.”