John Lewis scheme shows Community Matters

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John Lewis Milton Keynes has launched a new charitable giving scheme, Community Matters, which will see the retailer split a donation of £3,000 between three community groups every three months.

Charities will receive support as either John Lewis products, volunteering time from employees, or as financial support.

Customers at John Lewis Milton Keynes will be directly involved in deciding how much each good cause receives, by using a token to vote for the organisation they would like to support. Each charity will receive a share of £3,000 according to the proportion of the vote they receive from customers, meaning a charity with 31 per cent of the vote would receive a £910 donation.

Paul Hunt, managing director of John Lewis Milton Keynes, said: “We receive a lot of requests for help, but not every organisation needs financial support. By offering community organisations the option to receive our support as either volunteering time or as products, we can be more flexible in the help we offer. If a charity wants volunteers to redecorate a community centre, or if they need furniture and sports equipment, we can offer that help.”

Customers in the department store’s catering outlet, The Place to Eat, will be given one token per transaction, and will be able to follow how much of the vote each organisation receives over the three months.

Organisations eligible for Community Matters will include charities, schools and relevant community groups. The first organisations to receive support will be Ride High, Sailability and Sports Traider charities.

Paul Hunt, said: “Our Partners (employees) will look at the requests that come in and decide which three organisations to support for the following three months. We’ve already selected the first three charities we’ll support, but we’d love to hear from other worthy organisations which John Lewis could help.”

Organisations wanting to take part in Community Matters should visit John Lewis Milton Keynes Place to Eat to pick up a nomination form.

John Lewis is committed to supporting the communities in the areas it trades. In Milton Keynes, John Lewis supported 198 charities last year, with projects ranging from work experience placement’s for young people to Partners ‘sleeping out’ for a homeless charity.