Press releases

Waitrose celebrates fifth anniversary of Community Matters initiative and calls for local charities and good causes to get in touch

Wednesday 17 July 2013
  • £14 million donated by Waitrose in the last five years
  • 40,000 good causes benefited so far
  • Call for more local charities and community groups to get in touch.

Waitrose this weekend (21 July) celebrates the fifth anniversary of its community giving 'green tokens' scheme.

To mark the Birthday the retailer has released figures showing how much money has been donated to local good causes - and has called for charities near its shops to get in touch to benefit from the scheme.

Every month each Waitrose shop donates £1000 to three local good causes (£500 in Little Waitrose shops).  Customers vote for the share each charity receives using green tokens.

In addition to this, online customers choose between three national charities, to which Waitrose donates a further £100,000 a year.

The Community Matters initiative has given Waitrose customers the opportunity to vote on where more than £14m has been donated by Waitrose in local communities since the scheme’s launch in 2008.

More than 40,000 local good causes have received this support from Waitrose - from homelessness charities, wildlife charities, hospices or schools to local theatre groups or regeneration projects.

Says Waitrose Sustainability and Ethical Sourcing Manager Tina Varns: 'Our Community Matters initiative has brought our shops much closer to the needs of the local community, and our customers tell us they really appreciate a say in where we donate our charitable giving.

'We're always looking for more good causes to support through the scheme, so customers who know about a good cause - or charities themselves - should pop in to their local Waitrose and complete a nomination form.'

Notes to editors

  • The Community Matters initiative was awarded the Big Society Award in 2012 by Prime Minister David Cameron
  • Building on Community Matters donations, Waitrose in 2012 launched Partner Volunteering, which means that customers and 'good causes' can pop in to their local Waitrose and request either monetary support and/or volunteering help
  • Waitrose launched Grow and Sell this year to inspire children to re-engage with where food comes from and sell their produce outside our shops.  And the retailer recently (May) supported BITC Give and Gain Volunteering Day with more than 200 branches and 1000 Partners (Waitrose staff) taking part - supporting more than 15,000 children who were encouraged to eat healthily
  • For images/case studies please contact Jess Hughes on the details below.


For further information please contact:

Jess Hughes
Corporate Communications Manager, Waitrose
Telephone: 01344 824294
Press office: 01344 825080
Blackberry: 07764 676850