Waiitrose Partners to spend 1,000 hours volunteering in local communities
1 May 2012
The four branches of Waitrose in Scotland have launched a Partner Volunteering scheme, which will see the stores donate 500 hours of employees’ time to local charities and good causes. Each of the branches in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newton Mearns want to hear from local groups, charities and initiatives that could benefit from the support.
Over the coming months, Partners (as all employees are known) at all Waitrose branches in Scotland will take time out of their day-to-day job roles to support a variety of organisations. The type of support given could include:
• Transforming a woodland or garden for hospice or hospital patients to enjoy.
• Sharing retail and customer service skills with a local charity shop.
• Supporting a local litter pick to benefit the local environment.
The supermarket chain is rolling out the Partner Volunteering scheme across all of its 277 branches across the UK, as well as its head office and distribution centres. The initiative, designed to further Waitrose commitment to supporting the communities where it trades, will mean that the supermarket’s Partners will spend a total of 1,000 hours volunteering in Scotland each year and 75,000 hours across the UK.
The scheme is designed to enable Waitrose Partners to take time out of their day-to-day job roles to give back to their local community - this could include supporting local good causes and charities with a project they may otherwise be unable to complete, or passing on their valuable skills to make a tangible difference.
The supermarket hopes it will also provide Partners with the opportunity to develop new skills which they can apply within their own working or personal lives.
James Breckenridge, Branch Manager of Waitrose Newton Mearns, comments, “We’re delighted to launch our Partner Volunteering scheme at all Scottish branches of Waitrose. It will provide a fantastic opportunity for our Partners to choose local good causes and charities that they would like to give support to in recognition of the fantastic work that they do within our community. We would like to encourage any local causes in need of support to get in touch with us or fill in an application form at our Welcome Desks.”
Notes to Editors
About Waitrose in the Community:
• Partner Volunteering builds on the success of the hugely successful Waitrose Community Matters scheme which, now in its fourth year, has seen the retailer donate over £10 million to more than 30,000 charities and causes across the UK and Channel Islands.
• In January 2011, the Prime Minister David Cameron presented Waitrose with a Big Society Award in recognition of its Community Matters scheme and its work in the local community.
• In addition to Partner Volunteering Scheme, Waitrose is helping to put charities and causes who are need of support in touch with customers who wish to volunteer in the local community.
• Partner Volunteering will compliment the retailer’s Golden Jubilee Trust which was founded in 2000 and provides Partners with the opportunity to apply to work on full pay for local charities and community projects for up to six months. Since the initiative was founded in 2000, Waitrose Partners have provided over 52,065 hours to more than 145 UK charities.
• Waitrose Managing Director, Mark Price, is Chairman of Business in the Community (BITC), an independent business-led charity whose purpose is to improve the impact businesses have on society.