John Lewis Partnership promises ‘Christmas campaign like no other’

Business is aiming to raise £5m for the charities FareShare and Home-Start.

FareShare: charity has doubled amount of food it provides since pandemic began
FareShare: charity has doubled amount of food it provides since pandemic began

John Lewis Partnership has said it wants to “harness the spirit and thoughtfulness of the Covid-19 pandemic and create an outpouring of kindness to help Britain's struggling families” in a Christmas campaign that will incorporate a major charity appeal.

The business is again set to run a joint festive ad campaign for its two brands, John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners. While the creative details have remained under wraps, last month Pippa Wicks, executive director of John Lewis, said it would be “Covid-appropriate” – reflecting the financial hardship and the barriers to people spending time with their loved ones that many are likely to face this Christmas. 

JLP said it was planning to provide a lifeline to at least 100,000 vulnerable families this festive season. It will launch a charity appeal in November that aims to raise £5m for two charities: FareShare, which helps those facing food poverty, and Home-Start, which works with parents who need support.

Any direct donations made by consumers, up to a value of £2m, will be matched by the retailer, while purchases made in-store with a My JL or My Waitrose card will also trigger a donation. There will also be a range of campaign products on sale that will further raise funds. 

A further fund of more than £1m has been created to ensure all the retailers’ shops will be partnering FareShare, Home-Start and local charities in the communities they serve.  

Wicks said: “In a year like no other, the world has changed – so we will be delivering a Christmas campaign like no other. During 2020 we’ve seen some inspiring and heartwarming acts of kindness throughout our country and our communities. Now we want to build on this spirit to create a legacy that extends well beyond Christmas. Together we can all make a big difference to the families who need our help most.”

Her Waitrose counterpart, James Bailey, added: “This year has created even greater inequality in society with a catastrophic effect on some of the most vulnerable, and we are determined to play our part in addressing this. Everyone has a right to nourishment and a safe, warm home and we believe that as a Partnership, we can be an enduring force for good, which lasts well beyond Christmas.”

Campaign reported this week that Marks & Spencer would drop the Christmas TV ad for its clohting and home business – although the retailer will still be on TV for its food division, a key competitor to Waitrose.

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