At Co-operative Energy, we’re proud to say we take a community-focussed approach to everything we do. We’re part of the Midcounties Co-operative, and as a co-operative, we’re owned by our members, and strive to always be open, honest and responsible. We place great importance on making a real difference in the communities we serve – it’s what matters to our members, to our customers and to us!
We truly believe that by working together, we can create a better, fairer world. But don’t just take our word for it, here are four ways we’ve helped our communities over the past year, as part of the Midcounties Co-operative.
1) We’ve defended the environment
Environmental policies are a very important part of our social responsibility agenda – we’re committed to a sustainable world. We’ve ceased contracting energy from coal-fired power stations, and are working towards obtaining 75% of our energy from renewable sources within the next three years.
We’ve reduced energy usage by over 15% since 2010, saving over 7,000 tonnes of CO2, and have reduced the total amount of waste that we produced in 2016 to 3,600 tonnes, down from 5,500 tonnes in 2013. 91% of our waste is now being recycled, diverting over 3,000 tonnes of waste from landfills.
2) We’ve helped develop young people
We work with local schools, colleges and youth services throughout our communities, offering an extensive activities programme designed to engage and inform young people about the values and benefits of co-operation.
In 2016, we engaged over 9,000 young people, working with over 50 schools and higher education partners. We supported 280 students with work experience opportunities and enabled 131 students to complete our Green Pioneers programme, learning and being inspired to protect the environment.
3) We’ve engaged our colleagues and members
A co-operative is nothing without its members, which is why we place great importance on engaging our members and colleagues to help us achieve our goals. Last year, we engaged with more than 32,000 members, up from 25,000 in 2015.
4) We’ve supported local good causes
A large part of what we do revolves around supporting local good causes, working with both our colleagues and members to enable communities to grow together.
Last year, we distributed £1.6 million to the community – up from £1.2 million in 2015. Over the year, more than £390,000 went out to over 500 local community groups and good causes through grants and carrier bag monies.
But it’s not just financial support that we offer to local communities. Our members, colleagues and customers donated over 70,000 products to foodbanks last year, providing meals to over 1,000 families in need.
Our colleagues also delivered over 36,000 volunteer hours supporting their local communities last year – with 234,000 hours being volunteered over the last 10 years!
Want to know more about what it means to be a co-operative and how you can join us? Head over to our What If? page for more information.