Southampton Southern Co-op stores donate thousands to new children’s ward

Southern Co-op food stores in Southampton have joined forces to raise over £6,800 towards a new emergency trauma ward for children at the accident and emergency department of University Hospital Southampton.

All Southern Co-op stores in Southampton – City Gateway, Commercial Road, North Baddesley, Southampton High Street, Falkland Court, Boyatt Wood, Fairoak, Hursley Road, Colden Common, Leigh Road, Holbury, Archers Road and West End – came together following  Dean Millar’s (City Gateway Store Manager) suggestion that the charity should receive Southern Co-op’s ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ money, as well as monies raised from charity boxes in store.

L-R Southampton Hospital Charity’s Charlotte Otter, Southern Co-op’s Dean Millar and Southampton Hospital Charity’s Jeneen Thomsen

Dean said: “Both I and my three children have relied on the University Hospital and when we heard about the appeal currently running to help set up a new children’s emergency trauma ward I thought it was time to take action. I spoke to some colleagues at our neighbouring stores and they really wanted to get involved too.

“Now our colleagues at Commercial Road have selected the charity as their ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ partner for the next twelve months and the fundraising efforts have really snowballed. We all have lots more planned for the year ahead including a sponsored cycle in May as well as a 10k run that I am taking part in on 22 April. It’s a great feeling to be able to help like this!”

Jeneen Thomsen, Head of Major Gifts for the Southampton Hospital Charity said: “We are so grateful to the Southern Co-op stores who have raised this money for such a vital facility. And to now be the charity partner with the Commercial Road store and knowing that more fundraising is planned by all the stores who have already donated is such amazing news – thank you for all your support!”

‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ is Southern Co-op’s community engagement programme. This initiative addresses four key social themes, as identified by a survey of over 4,000 members and colleagues, for promoting: ‘Greener Neighbourhoods’, ‘Healthier Neighbourhoods’, ‘Safer Neighbourhoods’, and ‘More Inclusive Neighbourhoods’.

Charities and community groups can also apply for cash donations or goods in kind through the ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ scheme, which is funded by the 5p single-use carrier bag levy. For more information on how to apply, please speak to your local store manager, or visit: http://www.thesouthernco-operative.co.uk/makingadifference/love-your-neighbourhood/.