Scarborough retailer Proudfoot Group has raised £10,000 for good causes this year from the sale of 5p carrier bags alone.
The funds were raised in the four Proudfoot supermarkets, based in Newby, Eastfield, Seamer and Manham Hill, since the start of this year and have helped to support four local charities at a time when additional funding is needed more than ever.
Good causes in receipt of the carrier bag funds this year included Scarborough Disabled Swimming Group, Wetwheels Yorkshire, Girl Guiding Scarborough and most recently, Yorkshire Air Ambulance; who each received a donation of £2,500.
Wetwheels Yorkshire, based in Whitby, received their donation in May and aim to help build the confidence of disabled people by providing the opportunity to access the sea in a fun, safe and stimulating way, using specially modified, fully accessible powerboats. The group provides boating opportunities for people of all ages and abilities; offering a range of options from educational and mentoring programmes to sport and experiential trips.
Despite the pandemic presenting the group with initial challenges, the charity has since managed to resume trips for smaller groups of people from single households.
A spokesperson for Wetwheels Yorkshire said: “This will make so much difference to a lot of other individuals and groups and allow them to experience the freedom and fun of driving a powerboat. We guarantee there will be loads of smiles as a result of the generosity of the Proudfoot Group’s donation.”
Elsewhere, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance received their £2,500 donation earlier this month and said it would help towards the running costs of its two rapid response helicopters.
Rob Scott, East Yorkshire Regional Fundraiser for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance, commented: “This year, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance has lost approximately £420,000 in fundraising income due to the pandemic. It costs £12,000 a day to keep both of the Yorkshire air ambulances maintained and in the air and the £2,500 received from carrier bag sales will help greatly towards the vital funding of our service.”
The Proudfoot Group plan to support a further four local causes next year with proceeds raised through the 5p carrier bag charge in its stores. The supermarket and convenience retailer’s four stores have been raising money on a voluntary basis for good causes in this way since the introduction of the 5p carrier bag charge in 2015 and to date have donated £50,000 from the funds raised to charities and other community groups in the area.
In addition to the funds raised through the carrier bag charge, Proudfoot stores have supported local causes with more than £67,000 in donations raised through Nisa’s Making a Difference Locally charity.
Valerie Aston, director at Proudfoot said: “At Proudfoot we are committed to being a responsible retailer and so while we would encourage customers to reuse their bags wherever possible, we wanted to ensure that the funds raised from any single use bags still being sold in our stores would contribute something positive to the local community.
“Despite seeing a huge decline in the usage of single use carrier bags in our stores following the introduction of the 5p charge, we are delighted that the funds raised from the remaining carrier bags bought by our customers are able to support some fantastic local causes, particularly in such difficult times.”