Skateboarders are celebrating after receiving £2,000 from Tesco to develop and renovate their indoor facility in Newton Abbot.
The Lodge Indoor Skatepark, which is run by volunteers, provides activities for 300-400 children and young people each week.
They have been wanting to renovate the skatepark for months, and talented local skater Ash Parker even drew up some designs after a consultation with the organisation’s users.
Now, thanks to the Tesco Bags of Help funding, the skatepark can press ahead with its proposals.
Nikki Taylor, chairperson, said: “We’re very grateful to Tesco for this funding. We can now renovate the indoor skate park, with the young people at the heart of it. It will empower young people by giving them a platform to develop their ideas, upskill themselves through volunteer experience, attending courses and getting qualified in a range of vocational courses.
“We also plan to purchase new equipment and safety helmets and develop new marketing material to promote our centre to schools, communities and groups that have not found us yet.
“This project will improve confidence, social skills, positively impact on the local community, give them a sense of worth, a sense of pride and achievement and experience and skills that they can take into the real world at a later date for improved employability.”
The grant helped to take the total of Bags of Help funding shared among Devon charities and community groups to more than £2million.
The figure has been reached in only four years, with the Tesco scheme having been launched in conjunction with the charity Groundwork.
Among the landmark £2million sum is £140,000 donated to good causes in Newton Abbot.
Bags of Help uses money raised from bag sales to fund local projects. No profit is made from the sale of these bags. Through Bags of Help, Tesco customers vote in-store for their preferred local project, using the blue token given to them at the checkout. Every two months Tesco hands out grants of £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 in each of its towns.
Alec Brown, Tesco’s Head of Community, said: “Bags of Help has been a fantastic success and we’ve been overwhelmed by the response from customers who get to decide how the money will be spent in their community.”
Bags of Help has seen £71million fund more than 23,000 local projects across the UK.
Graham Duxbury, Groundwork’s National Chief Executive, said: “Bags of Help continues to enable local communities up and down the UK to improve the local spaces and places that matter to them.
“The diversity of projects that are being funded shows that local communities have a passion to create something great in their area. We are pleased to be able to be a part of the journey and provide support and encouragement to help local communities thrive.”
Funding is available to community groups and charities looking to fund local projects that bring benefits to communities. Anyone can nominate a project and organisations can apply online. To find out more visit www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp.
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