Teenagers' ideas help Sainsbury’s and Argos

Sainsbury’s and Argos have launched a new Help to Brighten a Million Christmases campaign to encourage one million food and toy donations in stores across the UK. The initiative expands on Sainsbury’s year-round food bank scheme and will be run in partnership with thousands of charity partners across the UK, to distribute the items to local communities in time for Christmas.

A group of teenagers from the National Citizen Service (NCS) in Exeter have played a major role to help kick-start the campaign, inventing new on-shelf labels to highlight priority products for donation.

NCS is a voluntary personal and social development programme for 15–17 year-olds, backed by the Government and established in 2011 to help build a more cohesive, mobile and engaged society. In this case, the group spotted that customers were noticing the food bank donation bins after finishing their shop, meaning it was too late to purchase products for donation. As part of a social action project organised through the NCS programme this summer, the 13 teenagers created a dedicated shelf edge label to remind customers during their shop. After successfully pitching the idea to store manager, Sarah Spurling, in Sainsbury’s Exeter, the labels were implemented in-store and donations tripled as a result.

Claudine Blamey, Sainsbury’s group head of corporate responsibility and sustainability, added, “We’re excited to be working together as a group to expand Sainsbury’s food donation programme and to launch Argos’ toy donation programme. We are committed to making a positive difference in local communities and we hope our customers get on board to help brighten the lives of those less fortunate in the community.

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