As a responsible corporate citizen, we need to contribute to meeting the economic and societal needs of the communities where we operate.


Through our social development programmes, we aim to make a meaningful difference in our communities. Our strategy has four pillars that are informed by the UN SDGs, and are aligned to our overall business strategy. They are also relevant to the national development priorities and key social issues in the markets in which we operate.

    Education is a national priority in many countries in which we operate. In addition, we can only grow and sustain long-term profit in an inclusive, equitable, growing economy that has a sufficiently skilled society and educated workforce.

    Millions of people around the world are food insecure, yet an estimated 30 percent of food produced globally goes to waste. As a food retailer we recognise that we have a role to play in working towards a food-secure future for all.

    A thriving and healthy community and workforce are key to the success of our business.

    Employee involvement allows us all to live our corporate values. It enables employees to make a difference to their communities and their environment while enhancing our Employee Value Proposition.


Our approach to social development is based upon meaningful collaboration with key partners. The complex challenges facing us require deep insights and a collective effort to make a difference. To this end, each programme or initiative we embark on is a collaboration between ourselves and one or more partners.

Our approach is also tailored to the various countries in which we operate. They have different social contexts and, therefore, require customised approaches to making meaningful contributions to the communities we impact.

Social development activities in South Africa are overseen by the Woolworths Trust. Established in 2003, this legal entity is managed by a Board of Trustees, and reports on its activities to the WHL Social and Ethics Committee.

Our Australian businesses manage their own strategic partners, relationships and campaigns, with a focus on community resilience, as well as 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


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