MIDCOUNTIES Co-operative is celebrating the work the organisation does in Worcestershire.

As part of Co-op fortnight, customers and the community have celebrating the difference the Co-Op's work has made - in particular its partnership with two charities that have a county presence.

Firstly, the charity has a partnership with Wyre Forest charity, Home Start. The partnership began in March and the Midcounties Co-operative has raised more than £4,000 for the charity.

This money is to be used for their work with families suffering with a variety of issues. Last year 488 children from 244 familie were given practical help, emotional support and advice. Midcounties funds were also used to hold a part for youngsters.

Belinda Darby, manager of Home-Start Wyre Forest, said: “Many of the families we support would find attending a social event like this one very difficult, due to disability, behavioural issues or low confidence, so many hadn’t attended a party before. The feedback from the event was fantastic and the families really benefited from being able to enjoy a day of fun away from daily stresses and pressures.”

Meanwhile, shoppers at Midcounties Food stores have donated thousands of items for food banks, and more than 14,300 food items handed out to people across the region between April 2017 and March 2018.

Midcounties has been working with the Trussell Trust network, which has a foodbank in Malvern, crucial as the number of people using foodbanks has risen in recent times.

Samantha Stapley, director of operations at The Trussell Trust, said: “The local partnerships between The Midcounties Co-operative and foodbanks has helped projects in our network keep up with the increase in need for emergency food. With the number of people turning to foodbanks increasing by 13 per cent in the past year, we need to ensure we have more food available. "