Supporting local communities through our Customer Donation Fund

Over £1.1 million donated through our Customer Donation Fund to 1,252 local causes since 2003. 

This year, we are proud to sponsor the Sport Gives Back Awards, a ceremony that recognises individuals and organisations that use sport to change lives. In addition to this, up to £20,000 from our Customer Donation Fund will be donated to existing Community Directplus customers who make a difference through sport.

How the Customer Donation Fund words

How the Customer Donation Fund makes a difference

Apply for the Customer Donation Fund

How the Customer Donation Fund works

We’ve always believed that doing good and doing good business should go hand in hand. As the original ethical bank built on co-operative values, we’ve always helped to build stronger communities, and always will. We know it’s the individuals and local initiatives that really make a difference to their communities and the people that live in them.

Our Community Directplus Current Account not only gives registered charities, community interest companies, co-operatives and credit unions an ethical way to bank for free, but also the opportunity to apply for funding from our Customer Donation Fund twice a year.

For every £100 increase in collective balances held in Community Directplus accounts, we will add 20p to the Customer Donation Fund, with a minimum of £5,000 being awarded twice a year. To date, we have supported over a thousand organisations and provided more than £1.1 million of funding to projects across the UK, from supporting positive mental health to providing food to the most vulnerable.

Apply for the Customer Donation Fund

How the Customer Donation Fund makes a difference

The world needs people who believe in making a difference. Read our customers' stories below to find out how the Customer Donation Fund is helping them make a difference in their communities.

Akatemia Team Learning

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Akatemia Team Learning is a not for profit organisation that has been a Co-operative Bank customer since 2019. They work with educators, communities and companies across the UK to create learning programmes which lay the foundations for young aspiring entrepreneurs.

The Customer Donation Fund has allowed Akatemia Team Learning to deliver additional training sessions to help young people gain confidence and set goals with Kate Saunders, a trained coach and social change producer.

Robert Goodsell, Co Founder of Akatemia Team Learning, commented: “I’m committed to making team based learning approaches available to more young people in their degree programmes, helping communities become more collaborative and resilient, and helping companies to discover the benefits of employee designed and led transformation.”

If you would like to find out more about the work that Atkatemia do, visit their website.

Climate Explorers

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Climate Explorers are a Community Interest Company (CIC) based in St. Albans. Their aim is to raise the profile of climate solutions and make the world a better place for future generations by creating YouTube videos and organising eco events and educational workshops.

The Customer Donation Fund allowed Climate Explorers to buy podcast equipment so they could develop their ‘Mind the Green Space’ podcast, which aims to encourage sustainable action and promote eco project volunteering.

Isaac Kenyon, Co Founder and CEO of Climate Explorers CIC, commented: "The generous support from the Bank has empowered us to amplify our voice and share inspiring eco adventure stories. We chose The Co-operative Bank due to the alignment of our values and we are grateful for the support the bank has provided our business.”

If you would like to find out more about the work that Climate Explorers do, visit their website.


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Charlie’s cancer support and therapy centre is a charity and free to attend community hub based in Gloucester. Their directors, therapists and volunteers from across the county are dedicated to helping people with or recovering from cancer to feel good.

Charlie’s has been a Co-operative Bank customer since 2014 and received a donation in 2022. With this donation, the charity has been able to secure the support of an experienced and trained ‘Can Rehab’ personal trainer. The trainer runs group and one to one fitness sessions for those who need to ensure they can exercise safely, building strength, stamina and confidence. These classes have been able to continually roll over with different people attending every 12 weeks.

Joanne Sutherland, Director of Charlie’s, told us “When you are living with or in remission from cancer, exercise during and after can be vitally important to your physical and mental health and wellbeing.”

If you would like to find out more about the work that Charlie’s do, visit their website.

Apply for the Customer Donation Fund

If you’re a Community Directplus account holder, you can apply for up to £1,000 from the Customer Donation Fund to support special projects and fundraising activities by completing the form below.

The closing dates for applications are in March and September. We assess applications in April and October.