Group for disabled and mentally ill residents gains funding from Tesco initiative

by Matt Tomlin

A supermarket charity scheme, Tesco’s Bags of Help, has aided a local Welsh charity by guaranteeing them a grant of £1,000 for the next year. The grant will go towards sustaining a weekly disability and mental health related social group organised by the charity.

Grants such as this are funded through carrier bag sales in Tesco outlets in collaboration with the organisation Groundwork. Every year, the final product of Bags of Help’s fundraising is the awarding of grants to thousands of local community projects.

The local charity in question here, Student Volunteering Cardiff (SVC), has been running since 1970, and funds activities such as its Whale of a Time Wednesdays for local disabled and mentally ill residents.

Cathays Methodist Church is where the group’s activities will be held using the funding. It has been indicated that SVC have also purchased some resources to be used by both volunteers and participants in the longer term.

Speaking of the grant, a Manager at SVC, Adrienne Earls, said: “Our volunteers create a fun, safe and supported environment where the adults can socialise and engage together. The funding has allowed us to continue the fantastic work our volunteers do making a difference to vulnerable adults’ lives.”

“We were delighted to receive the funding as it has allowed us to offer more stability for the project.”

Discussing the resources gained, Earls stated: “We now have a cupboard full of new materials, rather than a few tired resources which had been bought for other projects and loaned to the Whale of a Time Wednesday group.”

Tesco’s Communications Manager for Wales, Rhodri Evans, said: “The funding for Student Volunteering Cardiff is a great example of how Bags of Help can make a real difference in communities around Wales.

“We’re really looking forward to driving forward new initiatives in 2019 as Bags of Help continues to grow and help even more groups across the region.”

Bags of Help awards can be allocated by Tesco customers, who vote for which projects should gain funding with blue tokens given to them at the checkout. Blue tokens are placed into see-through boxes, with descriptions of the differing functions of each project displayed next to them. After votes are collected, funding is given to three groups in each of Tesco’s regions.

Bags of Help has awarded in excess of £56 million to over 16,000 UK community projects since the initiative began in 2015, with SVC’s grant being one of the latest in a growing number of projects aided by the scheme.

If you are involved in a charity or community project which requires funding, you can visit Tesco’s Bags of Help website to apply for a grant.

Student Volunteering Cardiff also has information on activities available for volunteers and those it supports on its website. Other ways you can enquire with the charity are by phoning 029 2167 6780 or by visiting their office at 5-7 Museum Place.

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