THE results are in after Tesco customers cast their votes this summer to help community projects in Mid and West Wales bag up to £25,000.
The supermarket is marking its Centenary year with two special Bags of Help funding rounds, with a huge £100,000 funding pot in Mid and West Wales.
The first of these special rounds concentrated on groups delivering health and wellbeing benefits. In first place, Cancer Research UK has been awarded £25,000, in second place, Cardiac Risk in the Young has been awarded £15,000 and, in third place, Maggie’s has been awarded £10,000.
Bags of Help, run in partnership with Groundwork, sees funding awarded to thousands of local community projects every year. So far, Bags of Help has awarded more than £5m to groups across Wales since it launched in 2016.
Cancer Research UK will be using its grant to help improve prevention and early diagnosis of cancer by providing free locally-tailored support to GPs and healthcare professionals across Mid & West Wales.
Emma Shiggins from Cancer Research UK, said: “Without our programme, it’s a sad fact that more people in Mid and West Wales would lose their lives to this horrible disease. Cancer doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t care what age you are, where you are from or what you do for a living. It affects everyone.
“With support from shoppers and Tesco’s grant the Cancer Research UK facilitators can help to drive further cancer prevention in the region and make sure that more people with cancer are diagnosed as early as possible, when treatment is more likely to be successful, and they have a better chance of survival.”
Dr Steven Cox, Chief Executive of Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY), said: “We are delighted by the news that support from local shoppers has placed the charity 2nd in the vote. The £15,000 grant from Tesco will now go towards funding three cardiac screening clinics across Mid & West Wales, allowing our experts to screen 300, local young people for underlying cardiac conditions.
Dr Cox added: “This has been a great opportunity for us to reiterate that the vast majority of CRY’s community screenings are funded by bereaved families, meaning there is no charge to the individual when CRY’s mobile cardiac screening service comes to a local venue.”
Maggie’s Swansea are using the funding through Tesco to provide free practical and emotional support for people with cancer, as well as their family and friends. With backgrounds in the study and treatment of tumours and years of experience within the NHS, Maggie’s Swansea supports people with the full breadth of a cancer diagnosis, from explaining test results to understanding how best to support a family member.
Maggie’s Swansea Centre Head, Sarah Hughes said: “We are so grateful to Tesco for their support and to everyone who took the time to vote. We rely almost entirely on voluntary donations to be able to support people living with cancer.
“Our Cancer Support Specialists are at the heart of this, being on hand to give anyone who walks through our door a warm welcome, a willing ear and a wealth of expertise to allow them to manage their own personal challenges.”
Keith Jackson, Tesco’s Bags of Help Manager, added: “Congratulations to the recipients of our first Centenary Grant voting round. They are all worthy winners and we hope these awards help them continue their important work in our communities.
“In 2019, we are celebrating a century of delivering great value for our customers. And what better way to celebrate this occasion than by using our flagship community grant scheme, Bags of Help to support even more groups and organisations who are helping to make a difference across Britain.”
The first special Bags of Help rounds concentrated on groups with a particular focus on groups tackling cancer, heart disease and diabetes, in line with Tesco’s National Health Partnership.
Another voting round is underway in stores now, with even more projects sharing in the cash. Customers are invited to vote for the project they wish to receive the top prize using blue tokens handed out at checkouts.
The funding will reach more than 30 regions, with an incredible £3,300,000 up for grabs in total.
Find out more about Bags of Help at www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp.