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Woolworths celebrates 85 years of quality by giving back R1 million to education

By in Education, Research, Policy on November 3, 2016

Woolworths today announced that it is marking its 85th anniversary by partnering with the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet fundraising programme in order to provide 50 educational bursaries of R20 000 each, totaling R1 million.  These bursaries, sponsored by MySchool, are available to all Woolworths customers as part of a special competition which runs until 31 January 2017.  To qualify, customers simply need to swipe their MySchool or linked Woolworths Cards every time they shop and every item purchased is an entry. Double entries are earned when purchasing kids wear and school wear. 

Woolworths opened its first store in 1931 in the Old Royal Hotel, Plein Street, in Cape Town. It is the oldest of South Africa’s big five retailers, and has grown from that single store to over 440 stores in South Africa, more than 86 stores throughout Africa, and employing more than 31 000 people. A key element of Woolworths’ business journey has been a commitment to making a difference in South Africa through a range of community programmes and, in particular, schools and education.

Woolworths has partnered with MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet, South Africa’s number one community support fundraising programme, since 1999 and over that time has given back nearly R400 million to assist a range of charities, animal and environmental organisations and schools.  Woolworths customers can sign up for a free MySchool card in store or online at www.myschool.co.za or link their Woolies card to MySchool and choose which beneficiary they want to support every time they shop.  Woolworths then gives back up to 1% of the value of purchases to the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet programme.

In addition, the Woolworths Making the Difference Education programme is now present in over 2800 primary schools across the country with a focus on the environment and healthy living.

Speaking on the importance of the Woolworths commitment and contribution to South Africa over the past 85 years, Woolworths South Africa CEO, Zyda Rylands said, “Birthdays are traditionally a time of giving and in celebrating 85 years of Woolworths it’s important that we both give back to our communities and take time to reflect on our heritage and the values that are intrinsic to our business. Most importantly, we would like to thank our people, our suppliers and our customers. Without them, we would not be where we are today as one of South Africa’s most respected companies.

Woolworths: Making a difference in South Africa

Over the past 12 years, Woolworths has donated more than R3.5 billion worth of surplus food and clothing to needy communities.

Woolworths has also provided assistance to those who need it most, by developing permaculture gardens in underprivileged South African schools and communities through our Eduplant programme to the value of R27.8 million.

Through our Enterprise and Supplier Development programme, we have grown 36 small businesses into trade and non-trade Woolworths suppliers.

Over the past 3 years, we have created 381 jobs, spent over R1 billion in procurement spend and facilitated R 57 million worth of loans to assist our suppliers in their respective growth journeys.