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Waitrose Community Matters

By placing a token in the Community Matters box at your local branch you’re helping your community. Since its launch in 2008, the scheme has donated £14 million to local charities chosen by you.

At the end of your shop in branch, you’ll receive a token to place in a box of the good cause you’d most like to support. The more tokens a cause gets, the bigger the donation they receive. Each month every Waitrose branch donates £1,000 (£500 in Convenience shops) between 3 local good causes that you choose.


Online, also shares a donation of £25,000 between 3 national causes. After checkout, you will be asked to vote for one of the national causes we are supporting. Each cause will receive a share according to the number of votes - just as we do in our branches.

Find out more about the good causes we support>

Our short video explains how you have the power to make a difference, and the easiest way to get involved.

Find out more about our partner volunteering>


National causes we are currently supporting on


UCL Dementia Research

UCL Dementia Research 

Down’s Syndrome Association

Down’s Syndrome Association

The Farming Community Network

The Farming Community Network

UCL Dementia Research 

UCL Dementia Research

‘An MRI scan showing white matter tracts throughout the human brain’ © Jamie Kawadler 

Dementia is the biggest socio-economic crisis of our time. In the UK there are currently 850,000 people living with dementia and the disease costs the economy £26 billion a year. At the moment for every £10 that goes on dementia care, only 6p goes to research. UCL’s dementia research is world-leading. It brings together some of the brightest and best minds to make new discoveries that will help us beat dementia: to find the cause, discover a cure and improve care for people living with dementia across the world. Support for UCL Dementia Research will be used to develop a new dementia research institute, which will bring together the best scientific minds in the world to face the dementia challenge head on and improve the lives of people living with dementia and their families.

Down’s Syndrome Association

Down’s Syndrome Association

Children with Down's Syndrome taking part in Down's Syndrome Association DS Active Football Session

Down’s syndrome is caused by the presence of an extra chromosome and occurs by chance at conception.  Down’s syndrome occurs in races, religious and economic situations. 

Everyone with Down’s syndrome will have a learning disability. Having a learning disability means that it takes longer for a person to process information and to learn new skills and tasks. A learning disability will last throughout a person’s life.

“Being a person with Down’s syndrome makes me proud. I am a person to make a difference to a lot of people. That’s me. We may find things difficult, everybody does. We should tell people about Down’s syndrome – the more people, the better. Being a person with Down’s syndrome I can do anything in life. We may need help (to do the things we want to do in life) … It is good to see people with Down’s syndrome achieving their dreams. That’s my dream.” Kate

People with Down’s syndrome are equally entitled to access high quality healthcare, good education, employment and social activity within their communities, but can often face barriers. 

Our DSActive sports programme is just one of the ways we are helping to transform the lives of children and adults with Down’s syndrome. 

DSActive creates opportunities for people with Down’s syndrome to take part in sport.  We are currently working with over 60 professional football and tennis clubs across the country and want to expand the scheme so more people can join in.  Individuals benefit physically, emotionally and socially.  We know that self-esteem and well-being are hugely improved in people who take part in DSActive.  As one parent commented, “He is always asking when the next DSActive session is, it increases his self-worth.”

With your support we can continue helping people with Down’s syndrome to live full and rewarding lives.

The Farming Community Network

The Farming Community Network

Recovering Flooded Farm Land

When Eric's wife died he just didn't know which way to turn. She had managed all the paper work for the farm business and kept the accounts – something Eric now had to learn to look after – and trying to cope with all of this while still grieving for the loss of his wife proved simply too much. The farm virtually ground to a halt until a friend of Eric's suggested he call the Farming Community Network. After a chat on the 'phone, one of the FCN volunteers went to visit Eric to give him the chance to talk to someone about his loss. At the same time, the FCN volunteer, organised some temporary secretarial help to deal with things like cattle passports and the volunteer went along with Eric to the see the bank manager to put his finances back into order. Although it is more than a year since Eric's loss, the FCN volunteer keeps in touch with him to ensure that everything is running smoothly and in case Eric ever just wants to chat.

This is just one of the thousands of cases handled by the 380 volunteers of FCN. As well as dealing with bereavement, problems can include illness and accident, legal wrangles over tenancy agreements, financial difficulties, sickness among the livestock, planning for retirement and ensuring that the business can continue.

The funds raised through the generosity of Waitrose customers will ensure that our volunteers can visit farms wherever they are needed and will also go towards improvements to our Helpline services which are available every day off the year. We are increasing the number of telephone lines, improving e-mail connections and introducing a facility to contact FCN via text message so more requests for help will mean recruiting and training more volunteers.

Thank you.

Community Matters results

To see the results and amounts that we have donated to previous charities click here

Contact us

If you are a UK-registered national charity and would like to be considered for our Community Matters Online initiative then please post your applications on headed paper for consideration to:

Waitrose Community Matters Team
Waitrose Limited
Doncastle Road
RG12 8YA

Please give a brief outline of the work your charity does along with details of any current projects that you are seeking funding for. This should be no more than one side of A4. The Community Matters Team will then only contact you if your application is successful or if they require further details.