WHL endeavours to create lasting positive social impacts that matter to communities and local stakeholders but also position the Group as a responsible and caring corporate citizen. The Inclusive Justice Initiative (IJI) ethos of ‘Inspiring inclusive growth for all our people’ informs how the Group shows up in the community and our strategy and approach to social development.
WHL acknowledges the positive role and impact the Group can have in the social development agenda of the countries where we operate. We believe developing relationships with the communities and stakeholders in our operational footprint is vital to business success.
We are committed to help build thriving communities by actively investing in social development programmes:
Our social development strategy has four pillars that are informed by the UN SDGs, and aligns to our overall business strategy. They are also relevant to the national development priorities and key social issues in the markets where we operate.
COUNTRY ROAD GROUP:
We encourage employee involvement in the Group’s social development activities. It enables our employees to make a difference in their communities and environment while enhancing our Employee Value Proposition (EVP).
Customers are also engaged in our social development activities through cause-related marketing, and for Woolworths, our customer loyalty programme, MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet.
Both employee and customer involvement enables the extension of the Group’s social development reach.
The world’s complex challenges require deep insights and a collective effort to make a difference. As such, the Group’s approach to social development is based on meaningful collaboration and partnerships that build capacity and develop supportive networks within our communities.
Our approach is tailored to the various countries where we operate. They have different social contexts and, therefore, require customised approaches to making meaningful contributions to the communities we impact.
The Corporate Social Investment (CSI) Policy guides, and the Woolworths Trust (Trust) governs Woolworths’ social development activities. Established in 2003, the Trust, a legal entity managed by a Board of Trustees, reports on its activities to the WHL Board Social and Ethics Committee.
The CSI Policy mandates that we assess potential programmes or initiatives with the drivers and risks of long-term sustainability in mind. Multi-year interventions are preferred above ad hoc or once-off projects, and we consider the relevance, scalability and potential for future expansion.
The CSI Policy also outlines how to distribute the Trust’s funds. The bulk is allocated to several flagship projects, which receive a three- to five-year commitment. The remaining funds are allocated towards matching funds for employee-nominated charities or smaller projects or initiatives determined at the Trust or Directors’ discretion.
In principle, Woolworths will not provide funding for programmes or initiatives aimed at:
Country Road Group brands manage their own strategic partners, relationships and campaigns, focusing on community resilience, particularly physical and mental health and wellness.
More information on the focus area and our performance thereon can be found in our annual Good Business Journey Report