Social Impact

The Partnership was founded with a powerful ethos: to be a force for good in society. We're passionate about making a difference to people’s lives, using our skills and resources to have a positive social impact.


We appreciate that many of the issues we help tackle are complex, so we always strive for deeper understanding before offering the support that we believe will make a real and lasting difference.

Our Strategy

We invest in our communities to promote a fairer and more inclusive society. This may involve donations, gifts ‘in kind’, strategic relationships with charities, or Partner volunteering and engagement with local communities. 


We’re proud of the relationships our shops have built with local charities and community organisations, strengthened by our network of Community Leads and Community Liaison Coordinators.

John Lewis Partnership Foundation

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The John Lewis Partnership Foundation is committed to sharing the skills and resources of the Partnership. We’re focused on the social and environmental causes where we can have the biggest positive impact. 

Our work is delivered through funds that directly address the areas that we and our customers care strongly about – from helping families in need to conserving habitats for local wildlife. Find out more about our funds and if you could be eligible for support on our Foundation pages.

Our Partnerships and Programmes

We’re proud to be making a positive difference to many causes:

Community Matters

Every year, our John Lewis and Waitrose stores make donations to local charities and community organisations.  

Throughout the year we have three rounds of funding, each one addressing a different theme – from health and wellbeing to nature and the environment. We donate over £2m to local causes each year, which are chosen by Partners from each of our branches.


FareShare Go


Our Waitrose stores support thousands of frontline charities through our work with FareShare and their surplus food redistribution programme FareShare Go,

In 2022 we integrated the free sharing app ‘Olio’ into our FareShare Go operation. Now, when FareShare is unable to collect surplus food from Waitrose, Olio Food Waste Heroes can step in and redistribute it instead. To date, Olio has shared 500,000 meals. And since 2017 we have donated over 8,100 tonnes of surplus food through FareShare Go – that’s over 19 million meals.


Home-Start UK


We've delivered a number of life-changing community programmes since we started working with Home-Start in 2020. This includes the Magical Christmas programme, where we provided families with everything they needed for an unforgettable celebration. And we’ve launched our Healthy Happy Home programme. This gives volunteers the skills they need to help families with everyday struggles such as understanding nutrition and basic cooking, support with sleep for infants and children, and how to manage household finances.


The Royal Countryside Fund


Waitrose is one of the founding partners of The Royal Countryside Fund, and we’ve contributed over £1.75 million since they were founded by HRH The Prince of Wales in 2010. Our funding has helped support rural communities and farming families across the UK, including their flagship initiative: the Farm Resilience Programme. Since 2022 we’ve invested £150,000 each year to support two of their core grant programmes: sponsoring projects that promote social cohesion, tackle isolation and rural poverty; and encouraging sustainable farming practices.


The Trussell Trust


Waitrose has worked with the Trussell Trust since 2011 when customer donation points were first installed in stores. These allow customers to easily donate products they’ve purchased in store to local food banks. 

There are now around 190 collection points in this network, which provide approximately 600 tonnes of donations each year – a vital and steady supply of food and other essentials. Alongside this, the Partnership also makes an annual donation to support the Trussell Trust’s network of food banks – in 2023, this came to over £500,000.


British Red Cross


We’ve worked with the British Red Cross for over 15 years and are founding members of the organisation's Disaster Relief Alliance. 

Through our partnership, we help the British Red Cross to support vulnerable communities, prepare for emergencies and respond rapidly when help is needed. In recent years, this has included those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, the crisis in Ukraine, and the flooding in Pakistan.

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King Charles III Charitable Fund


Waitrose has supported the King Charles III Charitable Fund since 2010. Each year the fund receives a donation of roughly £3 million, raised from the sale of Duchy Organics products. The fund’s mission is to transform lives and build sustainable communities, awarding grants to UK-registered non-profit organisations in the UK, Commonwealth and overseas.

Case Study

Community Matters in Edinburgh

A deeply woven 10-year relationship between the John Lewis Partnership in Edinburgh and the Grassmarket Community Project (GCP) has ensured consistent funding and resources for the charity, enabling it to plan and execute long-term projects that benefit the local community.

Our connection with GCP began in 2013 with a simple request for a raffle prize. Since then, through their Community Liaison Coordinator, John Lewis Edinburgh and Waitrose Morningside have built a deeper understanding of the charity’s mission and needs, resulting in the whole Partnership, including its trusts and foundations, working together to create a more meaningful long-term impact.

GCP is a community of over 500 people working together to support positive change in one another’s lives. Its mission is to create an inclusive, person-centred environment where people feel empowered to develop skills, build positive relationships and enjoy an ongoing sense of belonging.

GCP provide a welcoming, safe place for people who are often marginalised by society. Through their engaging member and volunteer services, they focus on health and wellbeing, creativity, core skills, experiences and opportunities. Everything they do is supported by their dynamic social enterprises and inspiring partnerships.

The Partnership, as well as our Partners and customers at both John Lewis Edinburgh and Waitrose Morningside, have made regular donations of items, money and time over the last decade. But mindful of the current funding environment for charities and the impact of the higher cost of living on local people, we have also made some more specific contributions to the project that have drawn on the expertise of our businesses and foundations.

For example, in 2023, the John Lewis Foundation funded an Assistant Woodwork Manager for the second year, and through the Golden Jubilee Trust, a Team Manager from John Lewis Edinburgh was awarded a 16-week secondment working as the charity’s Textile Development Manager. These roles help GCP to offer more training and support to young people interested in learning traditional production methods while also gaining valuable employability skills.

By using our talents and resources, we’ve helped the charity achieve many of its goals. But this anniversary does not mark the end of our collaboration. In 2023, GCP appointed a new CEO and we are looking forward to working with the charity on its renewed strategy and ambitions.


“We have a deep-rooted connection with John Lewis Partnership, with shared values and commitment to the communities we serve. This is a partnership of support and friendship, and, through the sharing of skills, knowledge and resources, we will continue to develop new ways of delivering powerful long-term impact for the future.”

Helene van der Ploeg
CEO, Grassmarket Community Project