A new community lottery has raised almost £5,000 for good causes and the voluntary sector in South Oxfordshire in the first three months since tickets went on sale.
South Oxfordshire District Council has thanked residents for supporting its SO Charitable Lottery by buying tickets.
The lottery started on March 27 and so far, £3,064 has been paid out from proceeds to local charities and voluntary groups that have registered as beneficiaries. A further £1,919 has been raised for SO Charitable Community Fund, which will be used to support the district’s voluntary sector.
Draws take place weekly and there have been 158 winners so far. No-one has yet scooped the £25,000 jackpot, but the biggest prize of £250 was won in Saturday’s draw (23 June). A further 13 people have won £25 and other winners have received three free prize draw entries.
For every £1 lottery ticket sold, 60p goes to good causes and the local community. Players can decide which cause they want to support when they buy their tickets or can choose for their money to go into the general Community Fund.
The remaining 40p from ticket sales goes to the prize fund and running costs – the council does not receive any of the proceeds.
Cllr Lynn Lloyd, South Oxfordshire District Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Services, said: “We have 58 local charities and voluntary organisations signed up to the lottery scheme and many are starting to see the benefits. Every penny counts and can make a difference to these organisations and that’s why we set up the lottery.
“It’s a great way of giving people the opportunity to support local causes within their communities in a fun, simple way while having the incentive of winning a prize, and I’d like to thank everyone who’s bought tickets so far.”
The council gives around £1.5 million in grants to voluntary and community groups in South Oxfordshire every year and SO Charitable Lottery was set up to help groups raise additional funds.
Little Milton Community Shop, which is run solely by volunteers and includes a café and Post Office service in Little Milton, is one of the good causes benefitting from the lottery.
Chairman Kevin Hunt said: “The funding from the lottery will help us to improve our service. We are actively encouraging people to play and to choose to support us, and it’s a great way to get the local community involved in supporting us.
“The shop, Post Office and café are a focal point for our small community and play an important role, so it’s important we keep raising funds to ensure this can continue.”
The first council-run community lottery was set up by Aylesbury Vale District Council in November 2015. South Oxfordshire is using the same external lottery management operator, Gatherwell Ltd, to run its lottery.
From every £1 ticket sold:
• 50p goes to registered good causes and 10p into the general SO Charitable Community Fund, which will be used to support the voluntary sector in South Oxfordshire
• 20p to the prize fund
• 17p to the external lottery management operator Gatherwell Ltd
• 3p to VAT