A CHARITY that puts the well-being of community members of all ages at the forefront of its thinking has spoken with gratitude about being selected as a beneficiary of the Co-op's Local Community Fund.
Thurrock Play Network, a not-for-profit group, is based at the Pyramid Resource Centre in Orsett Heath - one of the gems of the Thurrock charity scene. The centre is an Aladdin’s cave of resources for parents and carers of children and young people with a scrap store, handicraft materials and a toy library all under one roof.
The people it helps includes those from voluntary groups and local charities, involving parents,
grandparents, child-minders, uniformed groups, faith groups, pre-schools, day nurseries, schools, colleges, special needs groups, day centres, allotment groups and sheltered accommodation complexes.
Its purpose is to provide access to a wide range of low cost resources for play and recreation via the centre.
The good work of the network was recognised by the Co-op when it short-listed the group after public nominations of local good causes. It was then selected as one of the three charities supported by the local good causes scheme at the nearby Socketts Heath convenience store.
When Co-op members shop at the store, 1% of what they spend on selected Co-op branded products and services goes to support local causes through the local community fund. Members can choose a local cause that they want their 1% to support. As well as the Thurrock Play Network, the Socketts Heath store currently supports the Friends of Treetops School and Girlguiding West Thurrock.
As well as proving a physical resource for play in the borough, the network also works with the
community by giving placements to social care clients who use the centre with their carers (e.g. Thurrock Lifestyle Solutions (TLS), Beacon Hill Post 16 and Treetops School).
Miriam Gent, the Play Network manager, said: "We are able to provide a safe, secure and friendly environment for the clients to gain confidence to give them an insight into a working environment.
"Our project improves the quality of care, activities and education for children and young people in Thurrock.
"We have an extensive range of low cost resources available for sale or hire at The Pyramid Resource Centre that enables the provision of affordable, innovative high quality resources.
"We couldn't do this support work for the community without our own supporters, like the Co-op. We are so very grateful that they have been able to help us financially to sustain our service to make a real difference to the community."