- Whole M&S Family has come together (including M&S Bank and M&S Energy) to support long-standing M&S partner, Neighbourly
- The Neighbourly Community Fund, kickstarted by M&S, will support hundreds of local organisations (from food banks to youth clubs) to immediately deliver on the ground community support to the most vulnerable
- M&S will also donate every time a customer uses their Sparks card if they select the Neighbourly Community Fund as their preferred partner
- Charities supported by Neighbourly – in these uncertain times – need urgent help with everything from running core services, to offering emergency food parcels, to setting up new digital befriending programmes
The M&S family (including M&S Bank and M&S Energy) announced to its customers the launch of the new Neighbourly Community Fund. The family of businesses is kickstarting the fund with an immediate investment of £100,000, for community platform Neighbourly to put into an emergency fund and distribute in phases to its existing network of hundreds of charities and community groups across the UK.
M&S customers can support by selecting the Neighbourly Community Fund as their Sparks charity1. Sparks is M&S’s loyalty programme which offers a range of benefits including a penny donation by M&S to a charity of your choice every time you shop in-store or online. To date over £6million has been donated to good causes in this way.
In addition to this, M&S stores will continue to redistribute all surplus food or flowers to the Neighbourly network of hundreds of organisations via the Neighbourly platform. Earlier this year M&S launched an app to make it easier for colleagues to connect surplus product with the right local charity.
The M&S family will work closely with Neighbourly, it’s long-standing partner for over five years, throughout this difficult period – listening to what the community needs are as the situation changes and evolves.
Zoe Colosimo, COO of Neighbourly said, “Community organisations are coming under immense pressure and need support now more than ever. Immediate funding can help give immediate peace of mind that they can take urgent action to support the most vulnerable in our society. We know needs will evolve as we move through this crisis – from loneliness to hunger to financial concern, but we’re all in this together and we must keep working together.”
Steve Rowe, CEO of M&S said, “One of the things that makes me most proud to work at M&S is the role we play in our local communities. Not just through the brilliant service our colleagues give to our customers, but through the time and energy they give to helping those most in need. We can’t do this on our own and so we partner with organisations like Neighbourly who link our stores to local causes so we can donate surplus food and non-food products to the people who really need it. This fund will help mobilise over 1,000 local charities and organisations across the UK to support the most vulnerable members of our community. The whole M&S family is getting involved – including M&S Bank and M&S Energy – so we can keep up the support communities need most as events unfold.”
Alongside this local activation, at a national level, the M&S family is also donating £100,000 to the National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal and customers can get involved by selecting this as their Sparks charity.
One of M&S’s core values is to be “all in for the customer” – recognising this isn’t enough at the moment the team’s guiding value is “we’re all in this together.” The team is here to help and has already put in place measures to support customers, colleagues and communities2 – the M&S family will do its best to help every family it can