SCORES of local charities look set to benefit thanks to a new scheme at John Lewis at Home.

The store this week launched a new charitable giving scheme, Community Matters, whereby every three months a donation of £3,000 is split between three community groups.

The first organisations to receive support will be Drove Children Centre, Swindon Therapy Centre for Multiple Sclerosis and Stonham’s Canal House.

Customers at John Lewis at Home will be directly involved in deciding how much each good cause receives, by using a token to vote for the organisation they would like to support.

Each charity will receive a share of £3,000 according to the proportion of the vote they receive from customers, meaning a charity with 31 per cent of the vote would receive a £910 donation.

Organisations eligible for Community Matters will include charities, schools and relevant community groups. Branch manager Dominic Joyce said: “I am delighted that John Lewis at Home Swindon can further support the local community through this scheme.

“We receive a lot of requests for help, so our Community Matters scheme means we can do our part to help good causes in the region.”

“Our partners (employees) will look at all the requests that come in and decide which three organisations to support for the following three months.

“We’ve already selected the first three charities we’ll support, but we’d love to hear from other worthy organisations which John Lewis could help.”

During 2010, the John Lewis Partnership donated 2.59 per cent of its pre-tax profits to charities and community groups.

In Swindon, John Lewis donated £10,000 to local charity Asthma Relief, to purchase nebuliser machines for use by patients at home.

Among the first charities to benefit is the Drove Children’s Centre - a children’s centre supporting vulnerable families in Swindon, where the donation will fund new facilities in the children’s play room.

Another will be the Swindon Therapy Centre for Multiple Sclerosis, a self-help group offering support and therapies to people with Multiple Sclerosis and other neurological conditions from the Swindon and surrounding areas, where the donation will help fund yoga and pilates classes.

Finally, Stonham’s Canal House, a seven bed hostel for people involved in mental health services who require housing with support, will receive toiletry packs for residents.

Organisations wanting to take part should visit John Lewis on the Mannington Retail Park to pick up a nomination form.