Many PTAs are exploring supermarket grant schemes as a
way to raise funds, as they can represent more money for a lot less
Your local supermarket can be a great source of support for
school fundraising projects, combining a grant application with
community spirit. Typically, you can apply in-store or online, and
you'll usually need to show evidence that you're a not-for-profit
or charitable organisation. Some initial planning is required
because you need to have a specific project in mind that fulfils
the grant's criteria. Grants from five of Britain's biggest
supermarkets cover a considerable range of amounts, timescales and
criteria, so we've boiled it down to the facts to make it easy for
you to see which one suits you best.
If you do apply but aren't successful, don't be put off.
Instead, review your application to see how it can be improved.
Remember, application numbers can be high, so sometimes it's just a
numbers game. Always ask the organisation why you have been
unsuccessful to get an insight into what can be improved.
Even if your application is successful, you still have work to
do. Because the amount you win is dependent on a public vote,
you'll need to promote your project in the run-up to its in-store
launch. Use social media to boost awareness, and send press
releases to local papers and radio stations to reach more people.
Ask if the supermarket has any promotional materials or templates
you can use, and if you're holding a PTA event during the voting
period, take advantage of having a captive audience to promote even
Co-op Local Community Fund
What is it? The Co-op Local Community Fund
supports projects that make a difference to local communities near
the company's stores. Schools aren't eligible for the Co-op
Community Fund but PTAs are, so it's a fantastic source of funding
for PTAs to follow.
Amount: It depends on where you live, but most
communities receive £4,000-£6,000 to be shared between three
Length of time as a cause: One year
Deadline: The fund opens once a year, with a
How it works: Up to three successful
organisations will become the good causes for their local store for
one year, starting each October. Once customers have joined Co-op's
membership scheme, one per cent of their spend on own-brand
products is donated to the cause of their choice every time they
scan their membership card. At the end of the year, any unallocated
funding is split equally between the causes. Funds are received in
two payments - one in April and one in November.
Criteria: Your project must benefit your local
community and could include improvements to indoor or outdoor local
spaces, wellbeing activities to support the mental or physical
health of the community, or helping people reach their full
potential by developing their skills.
What else does it offer? Co-op also offers its
staff members two days' paid leave per year for voluntary work. Ask
in your local store to see if this could benefit your school.
AsdaFoundation Green Token Giving
What is it? Asda's Green Token Giving programme
provides local funding for three local charities each month.
Amount: £200 or £500. The amount awarded is
dependent on the number of votes your cause receives from the
public; £500 for first place and £200 for second or third
Length of time as a cause: One month
How it works: Three local charities or good
causes are nominated each month to receive a small grant, which is
voted for by shoppers (using tokens) at their local store.
Criteria: The Foundation aims to support
projects that tackle underlying problems in the local community,
benefit the wider community and make a real long-term
What else does it offer? Community Champions at
each store can volunteer their time locally, which includes working
with teachers to promote healthy eating and an active lifestyle.
The Asda Foundation also offers funding to 'significant local
community projects'. The amount offered is discretionary, but is
generally no more than £35,000. Charities and not-for-profit
organisations can apply for funding for capital works and/or
equipment that will benefit the local community.
Tesco Bags of Help
What is it? Bags of Help is a token scheme
that's managed and implemented by community charity Groundwork UK
and is funded by Tesco's carrier bag charge.
Amount: All projects in Tesco's scheme win
money, but the amount rewarded depends on the vote - first place
receives £4,000, second place £2,000 and third place £1,000.
Length of time as a cause: Projects are changed
every other month
How it works: Eligible projects are reviewed,
and the best three from each area are put forward for a public vote
every other month, with customers able to use a token to vote for
the cause they want to support.
Criteria: Grants can be awarded to voluntary or
community organisations, including registered charities and
schools. Examples of projects funded include items such as sports
kits and medical equipment and improvements to buildings that
benefit the local community.
What else does it offer? Ask in store for your
local Community Champion to see how they can support your PTA.
Waitrose & Partners Community Matters
What is it? Each Waitrose branch runs a token
scheme that supports three different community groups each
Amount: A share of £1,000 (£500 in Little
Waitrose), split between three local causes.
Length of time as a cause: One month
How it works: Charitable organisations can
apply to their local Waitrose store to be a good cause. Customers
receive a token when they shop, which they place in the box of the
cause they'd like to support. This dictates how the £1,000 is
Criteria: The scheme supports any local good
What else does it offer? The Community Matters
Partner Volunteering initiative means that local causes can bid for
'partner time'. Ask in store for details.
The Morrisons Foundation
Unlike supermarket schemes that rely on public voting, The
Morrison Foundation's grant funding is a one-step process where
applicants fill in an online form. Grant applications can take up
to three months to review, and you will be notified on the outcome
of your application even if it's unsuccessful. There's no minimum
or maximum amount for grants, but you must be registered with the
Charity Commission or Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator.
Projects must make a positive difference in local communities. The
Foundation also match-funds money that Morrisons colleagues raise
for their chosen charities, so it's worth asking if you have any
Morrisons employees within your school community.
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