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Co-operation in action: #KeepCooperating

22 June 2020

Over recent months, we’ve seen fantastic examples of co-operation across all parts of society. Millions of us have applauded our key workers on Thursday nights and we’ve worked together (whilst staying apart) to support the most vulnerable people in our communities.

As we celebrate Co-op Fortnight from 22 June to 5 July, which in 2020 has the theme #KeepCooperating, we’re highlighting the importance of co-operation and showcasing the different ways that co-ops and people within our communities have worked together throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

Here at The Co-operative Bank, we’ve taken the #KeepCooperating theme to heart by supporting our customers, local communities and hospitals in a variety of ways; whether that’s been through donating care packages to our NHS, supporting national and local charities through charitable funds, or providing extra support for those colleagues and customers who’ve struggled at this difficult time.

Our commitment to the co-operative values has helped us to work co-operatively to ensure our customers and communities are at the heart of everything we do, despite the challenges during these difficult times.

Supporting our customers

Many of our customers have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and we’ve had to adapt quickly to provide vital support, whether that’s through offering payment holidays on loans and mortgages for personal customers or being part of the government backed loans scheme for our business customers.

We realised that many of our charity customers were experiencing a dramatic drop in income due to the pandemic. We provide banking services to over 4,400 charities and we were delighted to be able to provide funding to 55 of those organisations to support projects that will make a positive difference within local communities. These 55 projects span across the whole of the UK and cover a wide range of issues. They include an organisation that’s collecting surplus food and delivering it to the most vulnerable, a scheme that helps disabled children to build their confidence, a programme that gives families the resources they need to overcome struggles and a scheme that’s equipping young people with the skills they need for a better digital future. It’s great to have been able to support our customers in the amazing work they do.

Supporting our communities

Our colleagues have found new ways to support their communities during these extraordinary times. From digital volunteering to sending out care packages to NHS staff, we know that together we can make a real difference.

Colleagues have been working together to raise money remotely with online quizzes and talent shows, as well as donating through our Pennies from your Payslip scheme to raise funds for our charity partners. We’ve also encouraged colleagues to volunteer in their local communities and they’ve responded by collecting key supplies for foodbanks, preparing meals for homeless people, and distributing PPE and care kits to schools, hospitals and key workers.

Our commitment to the co-operative values is something we focus on all the time, not just in times of crisis. You can find out more about how we demonstrated our co-operative spirit last year in our latest Values & Ethics Report. As we celebrate Co-op Fortnight, we’ll #KeepCooperating, and we’ll keep supporting our communities and the causes our customers care about.

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