STOURBRIDGE charities and community groups are set to benefit from new kitchen facilities at St Michael’s Church thanks to a £2,000 refurbishment.

Thanks to funds from The Midcounties Co-operative, the Norton church has been able to install new kitchen units plus a new dishwasher - all of which will be used regularly by groups, including Breast Friends, a cancer support group founded by Midcounties colleague Sylvia Cooper.

The kitchen was officially opened at the Breast Friends Christmas party, attended by more than 30 of the group’s members, plus representatives from the church and The Midcounties Co-operative.

The church allows the group to use its facilities free of charge for its fortnightly meet-ups, which are open to anyone affected by cancer.

Sylvia Cooper, founder of Breast Friends in Stourbridge, said: “The church enables us to offer local people affected by cancer a safe space to share their experiences with others in a similar position.

“The new refurbishment will enable us to host a wide range of new events and reach out to more people in need of our support, as well as generally providing a more welcoming space for our members.”

Jim Stuart, store manager at The Midcounties Co-operative Food Store in Stourbridge, said: “St Michael’s plays such an important role in the community, and we hope this donation will help to bring even more members of the local community together.

“We look forward to continuing our work with the church and other similar groups in Stourbridge and nearby areas to make a positive difference to the local community.”

The money for the refurbishment was provided from the Midcounties’ Community Grant, and collections led by colleagues in Midcounties food stores.

The Community Grant forms part of the society’s regional communities strategy, which sees members and colleagues unite to provide support for community groups through volunteering and fundraising initiatives.