Disabled Access for cat Cafe – Fresh Charity Calls for Votes in Tesco Token Scheme

Fresh Charity and Pause Cat Cafe call out for shopper suppawt for a share of Tesco’s Community Grants

Fresh Charity has been selected by Tesco Community Grants to receive £500, £1,000 or £1,500 towards extending disabled access downstairs in Pause Cat Cafe. The amount awarded will depend on the results of a public vote in Tesco stores in the Bournemouth area from April.

Fresh Charity offers animal care and hospitality placements for people with disabilities at Pause Cat Cafe. The ground floor of the cafe is accessible but there is no wheelchair access to the lower floor.

Fresh Charity and Pause Cat Cafe Founder Jaya Da Costa says “Many of our visitors, trainees, volunteers and staff are wheelchair users and the cats love climbing aboard to say hello, but there are parts of our venue that can’t be reached without stairs”. She continues: “The cats are free to roam and we can’t guarantee where they will be, sometimes they are all downstairs! Adaptations would enable everyone to enjoy animal assisted therapy throughout, in particular, we could offer animal care training to more people as the cat care rooms are downstairs”.

Tesco works with community charity Groundwork to run its community funding scheme awarded to local community projects. Three groups in every community have been shortlisted to receive cash awards and shoppers are being invited to head along to Tesco stores to vote for who they think should take away the top grant.

Fresh Charity and Pause Cat Cafe’s accessibility project is on the shortlist for the Bournemouth area. Shoppers can vote at Bournemouth Extra and Kinson Superstores as well as local Express stores in Holdenhurst Road, Charminster, Pokesdown, Dolphin Express, Southbourne, Tuckton, Christchurch, West Parley, Bear Cross, Northbourne, Muscliffe and Moordown.

Voting is open in all Tesco stores from the first week of April and customers will cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out each time they shop.

Tesco’s Community Grants scheme has already awarded over £100 million to more than 50,000 projects across Britain. Tesco customers get the chance to vote for three different groups every time they shop. Every three months, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions will be awarded funding.

Claire De Silva, Head of Community at Tesco, said: “Tesco Community Grants help support local good causes but especially those projects supporting young people, those providing food, and local causes close to our colleagues’ hearts.”

Groundwork’s National Chief Executive, Graham Duxbury, said: “Tesco Community Grants continues to give local projects the boost they need to help their communities thrive. By funding services which support young people and reduce food poverty, we hope to facilitate positive change from the ground up across the UK. We are pleased to have been able to help so many local good causes over the years and look forward to seeing what community organisations can achieve in the future with the right resources.”

Funding is available to community groups and charities looking to fund local projects that bring benefits to communities, particularly those helping to provide food and giving children the support they need for a good start in life. Anyone can nominate a project and organisations can apply online. To find out more visit www.tesco.com/communitygrants.

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