A NUMBER of Wee County causes received an early Christmas present this week when it was announced that they were receiving a funding boost.

The Co-op revealed a £31,000 funding boost which is being split among a number of great causes which applied for the grants.

The money will be shared by 17 organisations, all of whom are making a real difference to communities throughout the region.

These include the 4th Alloa Guides, Play Alloa and Dollar Museum which received £1913.78.

Members of Dollar Co-op presented a cheque to the group outside the store last week.

It was part of the latest round of pay outs from the community fund, and brings the amount the Co-op has invested in good causes since the scheme launched in September 2016 to £58,000.

Maria Malcolm, manager of Play Alloa, said the money was a great boost to her organisation.

She said: “We are receiving £1690 which is absolutely fantastic. The best thing about the Co-op is that it goes to supporting local businesses.

“Over the years we have had great support from the local Co-op.”

Describing how the money might be best used, she added: “It will most likely be used to get new equipment and toys. It’s non-specific.

“It will be used for a variety of ages. We are looking to introduce more outdoor facilities, so it might be used to get outdoor materials.”

According to the latest figures from the Charities Commission, just under 40 per cent of all charities have an income of less than £10,000.

Therefore, the £2,750 average pay out will be a significant boost to funds for the 4,000 organisations that are receiving a payment from the Co-op.

Rufus Olins, Director of Community and Campaigns at the Co-op, said: “It’s great to be delivering an early Christmas present to those communities and individuals that need it most.

“Making a positive contribution and making great things happen locally has been at the heart of The Co-op’s purpose since 1844, and the local community fund is a good modern example of this.

“Along with our members, we’re proud to be making a difference to hundreds, if not thousands, of local lives.

“Since the scheme launched Co-op members have helped to raise an amazing £20 million for 8,000 local causes nationally, but we want to do more, so the more people shop, the more good causes can earn.

“However, this is not just about giving money, it is about developing relationships with good causes in local communities, and over the past year we have been touched by hundreds of ways in which people have made their own communities better places to be.”

The Co-op has 4.6 million active members including 1,240,000 recruited since the new scheme began on 21 September 2016.