Foodstore staff hit target for funding support centre for disabled people

Jean Dixon (right) of the Lisa Dixon Centre, Burt Close, Haswell, with members of the variuos Co-op Stores from the Tees to the Tyne and as far West as Darlington and Crook who helped clear and landscape the Centres' gardens.
Jean Dixon (right) of the Lisa Dixon Centre, Burt Close, Haswell, with members of the variuos Co-op Stores from the Tees to the Tyne and as far West as Darlington and Crook who helped clear and landscape the Centres' gardens.
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FOODSTORE staff are celebrating reaching a fund-raising milestone for a North East charity.

Workers from 99 Co-operative branches in the region hosted a series of in-store events to reach £16,000 for the Lisa Dixon Centre, in Haswell.

The purpose-built million-pound centre, which offers support to disabled people, is the home of Haswell and District Mencap Society (HDMS).

It bears the name of courageous Lisa – who died in 2004, aged 32 – and a plaque which reads: “Our Inspirational Little Star.”

When she was born with severe mental and physical disabilities, doctors predicted Lisa’s life expectancy prospects were “not too good.”

But she battled against the odds to live a happy life – inspiring her parents Jean and Arthur to form HDMS.

The centre offers activities and services for North East people, including youth activities, counselling services, cancer support sessions, job clubs, employment support and IT classes.

It is very greatful for the support it gets from the Co-op.

Fund-raising activity has included in-store raffles, lottery bonus balls and fancy dress days, with members of staff and customers really getting behind the activities.

Staff will continue their efforts throughout the year, with the team aiming to pass the £20,000 mark by December.

John Irwin, the regional operations manager for the North East and North Yorkshire, said: “As a community retailer, it is vital that we support local causes.

“The work of the Lisa Dixon Centre is so valuable and I am thrilled that we are able to help to raise funds to help the charity in the future. We’re now looking forward to another fantastic four months of fund-raising.”

He added: “We couldn’t have reached this point without the support of our customers across the region and we want to give a big thanks to everyone that has donated so far, their support has been fantastic.”

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