Hundreds of Lichfield schoolchildren will be able to improve their reading skills after shoppers forfeited the rewards they earn on their purchases to raise £500 for new books.
The money will enable Chadsmead Primary Academy to restock its library shelves and offer pupils more choice.
Head Gemma Grainger said the cash, raised by customers at Tamworth Co-op’s Lichfield convenience store donating their dividends, had come at a perfect time.
“This will add a real ‘wow factor’ to the library which we’ve just reorganised. We found there were gaps we needed to fill. We are so grateful for this money as it will allow us to boost the quality of books that we can provide.
“We want to build up a big bank of fiction and non-fiction titles, covering lots of genres, that our children can enjoy reading.”
Nicky Gilbert, manager of the convenience store in Marks Way, Lichfield, presented the cheque to the school which is just a few minutes’ walk away.
She said: “This year our customers nominated the local primary school to receive their dividends. We’re delighted to be able to make such a valuable contribution to giving these pupils the joy of reading.”
A total of 250 pupils, aged six to 11, will benefit from the grant, distributed by Tamworth Co-op’s Community Dividend Fund.
The books will be used in tandem with Accelerated Reader, a computer program used by teachers to monitor how youngsters are progressing with their reading. After finishing a book, they take an online quiz to check if they have understood it and need any help with specific vocabulary.
Over the past ten years the Community Dividend Fund has handed out around £100,000 to deserving community causes including many in Lichfield.
Each of Tamworth Co-op’s 11 food stores, along with its main department store and supermarket, support a different cause every year.