Marks & Spencer’s Plan A Ambassador Joanna Lumley hosted her very own Macmillan Coffee Morning

LONDON, 2016-Sep-15 — /EPR Retail News/ — Today (14 Sep 2016) Marks & Spencer’s Plan A Ambassador Joanna Lumley hosted her very own Macmillan Coffee Morning at M&S High Street Kensington, as part of the company’s headline sponsorship of Macmillan Cancer Support’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning. The extra special coffee morning kick started a season of coffee mornings which will be happening all over the country including thousands taking place on the official World’s Biggest Coffee Morning – Friday 30th September.

Joanna was joined by Sarah Hodge, a Macmillan Professional Occupational Therapist, Macmillan CEO Lynda Thomas and M&S Sparks members to enjoy coffee and cake. The group heard from Sarah on the importance of the partnership, which funds Macmillan professionals, before tucking into the very best of M&S’s sweet treats.

This is the seventh year that M&S has supported World’s Biggest Coffee Morning and during this time it has raised over £6 million for Macmillan. This year it is hoping to raise even more than last year’s total of over £2 million, through coffee mornings such as Joanna’s and through donating 10% from the sales of classic cakes and a selection of biscuits, cupcakes and cookie mixes sold throughout September.  M&S Cafés will also be donating 5p from every coffee and cake sold through the month – the perfect excuse for popping into your local store for a treat

Joanna Lumley, Plan A Ambassador said: “There are currently 2.5 million people living with cancer and by 2020 almost one in two people will get cancer at some point in their lives. It’s the reason that the work of Macmillan professionals like Sarah is so critically important and why I’m proud to work with M&S on this incredible partnership. I urge everyone to get involved, pop into M&S for a coffee & cake this month and Spark Something Good.”

Sarah Hodge, an Occupational Therapist for Macmillan Cancer Support said: “At Macmillan we believe no one should face cancer alone. Macmillan’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning encourages people to get together with family, friends or colleagues over coffee and cake, to raise money for people affected by cancer. It’s been great this morning to come together with Joanna and M&S customers to celebrate the huge difference that can be made through this partnership.”

For more information on World’s Biggest Coffee Morning and to get your free coffee morning kit visit www.coffee.macmillan.org.uk or text SEPT to 70550.

To learn more about Macmillan’s partnership with M&S, visit http://coffee.macmillan.org.uk/about/sponsors.

Notes to Editors:

About Macmillan Cancer Support 
When you have cancer, you don’t just worry about what will happen to your body, you worry about what will happen to your life. Whether it’s concerns about who you can talk to, planning for the extra costs or what to do about work, at Macmillan we understand how a cancer diagnosis can take over everything.  That’s why we’re here. We provide support that helps people take back control of their lives. But right now, we can’t reach everyone who needs us. We need your help to make sure that people affected by cancer get the support they need to face the toughest fight of their life. No one should face cancer alone, and with your support no one will. To get involved, call 0300 1000 200 today. And please remember, we’re here for you too. If you’d like support, information or just to chat, call us free on 0808 808 00 00 (Monday to Friday, 9 am–8 pm) or visit macmillan.org.uk

About Spark Something Good 
Spark Something Good is M&S’ way of helping customers and colleagues make a real difference. Whether it’s getting involved in the community through Charity of the Year activity, Shopping old clothes or helping M&S’s efforts to beat cancer (with Breast Cancer Now and Macmillan). It encourages customers to join in and Spark Something Good. It is an important element of M&S’s Plan A programme – its sustainable business plan which focuses on protecting the planet through sourcing responsibly, reducing waste and helping communities.

For further information and images, please contact: 
Marks & Spencer
Daniel Himsworth
Marks & Spencer Press Office
07827 858655
daniel.himsworth@marks-and-spencer.com

Macmillan Cancer Support:
Janelle Butterfield
Macmillan Cancer Support
07779434813
JButterfield@macmillan.org.uk

Source: Marks & Spencer

Eco and Ethical Programme: Marks & Spencer releases its 2016 Plan A Report

2015/16 Plan A highlights

  • Charity donations help reduce food waste by 9%
  • Plastic microbeads removed to help protect marine life
  • Clothing and food suppliers detailed on interactive supply chain map
  • Only certified sustainable palm oil used in M&S products
  • Nearly three quarters of M&S products have an eco or ethical quality
  • 90% of Sparks card holders have chosen a charity to support and donations set to pass £1 million mark
  • Store and warehouse energy use down 39%, water use down 31%
  • First M&S Human Rights Report published

LONDON, 2016-Jun-09 — /EPR Retail News/ — Marks & Spencer today reports more good progress on Plan A, its eco and ethical programme, in its 2016 Plan A Report. A further 22 commitments were achieved in 2015/16 and good progress was made in engaging its 32 million customers in Plan A.

The first report under new CEO Steve Rowe pledges to go even further on customer engagement by putting the customer at the heart of the plan.

Steve Rowe, Marks & Spencer’s Chief Executive said: “We are putting customers right at the heart of our business. That includes Plan A as much as any other part of our business and that’s why Plan A is now part of our customer and marketing team. It is a crucial part of how we engage with our customers, gain their trust and make every moment special for them. We know that Plan A is a win-win approach – a simpler, more efficient, less wasteful business is better for the planet and our bottom line – so we’ll chase that even harder.”

Highlights from the new report include nearly three quarters (73%) of all M&S products now have an eco or ethical quality (up from 64% last year) notable progress on improving UK and Ireland store and warehouse energy efficiency (energy use down 39%) and water efficiency (water use down 31%) and several firsts including the launch of an interactive supply chain map and the publication of the M&S Human Rights report.

Mike Barry, Director of Sustainable Business at Marks & Spencer, said: “2015 was an important year for sustainable business and Plan A. Yet again we’ve achieved tough and stretching targets. The successful Paris Climate negotiations and the launch of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals have created a long-term direction of travel for the global economy and companies need a bold vision and comprehensive plan to make sure they are aligned with these important agreements. Under Steve’s leadership we’ll continue to play our part and crucially put the customer at the heart of everything we do, nurturing the strong trust they have in us and inspiring them with new and innovative solutions to more sustainable living that feels personal and local to them.”

2015/16 Plan A highlights in more detail

Charity donations help reduce food waste by 9%

Food waste reduced by 9% per 1,000 sq ft of food selling space, achieved through improved systems leading to better sales estimation and the nationwide roll out of an unsold food redistribution scheme with social network Neighbourly.com. The scheme has seen M&S owned stores work with 500 charities such as food banks and community cafes.

Plastic microbeads removed to help protect marine life

Plastic microbeads from wash-off personal care products were removed in April 2015, almost a year ahead of the 2016 Plan A target. Plastic microbeads are harmful to marine life and end up in our oceans when washed into the water system.

Clothing and food suppliers detailed on interactive supply chain map

Customers and stakeholders can now see where M&S clothing and home products are made and food products are produced on the M&S supply chain interactive map.  690 clothing and home and 540 Food suppliers are listed.

Only certified sustainable palm oil used in M&S products

All palm oil used in M&S products in 2015/16 was Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certified. 99% was a mix of segregated and mass balance (last year 82%), with the remaining one per cent covered by the purchase of GreenPalm certificates to encourage the transition to sustainable supplies (last year 18%).

Nearly three quarters of M&S products have an eco or ethical quality

73% of M&S products sold (based on volume) had at least one Plan A quality above and beyond the market norm in 2015/16 (64% in 2014/15). Examples include the UNICEF shopping bag made from up-cycled hotel linen, the Limited London clothing collection made from sustainable fabrics in eco factories and the launch of Active Health – cholesterol lowering prepared meals.

90% of Sparks card holders have chosen a charity to support and donations set to pass £1 million mark 

90% of customers that hold a Sparks membership card have chosen one of nine charities to support. M&S donates a penny to the customer’s chosen charity every time they shop at M&S and donations are set to pass the £1 million mark next week (week commencing 13th June). Charities benefitting include Macmillan Cancer Support, Great Ormond Street and Shelter.

Store and warehouse energy use down 39%, water use down 31%

Total energy use across UK and Ireland stores, warehouses and offices was down 39% and water use was down 31% (both figures against a 2006/07 baseline) as continued investment in technology and people engagement paid dividend.

First M&S Human Rights Report published 

In recognition of the growing, global focus on Human Rights and the role business plays in protecting them, M&S has joined the UN Global Compact and today published its first ever Human Rights Report. The report outlines M&S’ approach to respecting human rights both within its own business operations and throughout its supply chain.

Plan A in numbers

Plan A in numbers

For the full report please visit – http://corporate.marksandspencer.com/

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Further information
Corporate media enquiries
Daniel Himsworth, Marks & Spencer Press Office, 0208 718 1618
daniel.himsworth@marks-and-spencer.com 

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Plan A Ambassador Joanna Lumley with Sparks card

Plan A Ambassador Joanna Lumley with Sparks card

Marks & Spencer joined forces with Joanna Lumley to launch new initiative Spark Something Good

LONDON, 2015-8-3— /EPR Retail News/ — Marks & Spencer (M&S) has today joined forces with Joanna Lumley to launch Spark Something Good. The new initiative aims to inspire and motivate employees and customers around the country to grab a shovel, pick up a paintbrush and take action for social good – donating time to their local communities to improve lives up and down the country.

Today in London, M&S, its customers and employees, along with members of local communities, will be completing 24 community projects around the capital in 24 hours. Led by Joanna and CEO Marc Bolland, the company aims to spark its 34 million customers into action by showing just what can be achieved in just one day when people come together united by a common goal.

Projects set to be completed within 24 hours include the transformation of an unused central London rooftop into a colourful children’s play area, renovating a community farmyard, providing a new dining room for a busy soup kitchen and the planting of an edible garden. Projects include St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington and Brixton Soup Kitchen.

The launch will kick off projects in a further 24 towns and cities across the UK and Ireland over the next 24 months.

A newly created Spark Something Good website –www.marksandspencer.com/getinvolved – has been developed in partnership with the social network for social good, Neighbourly.com. The site shows the local fundraising and volunteering opportunities that every one of M&S’ owned stores are involved in. Every store has chosen a local charity of the year to fundraise for and support, meaning customers who can’t volunteer time or skills have the opportunity to make a difference in the community through donations in store.

The site incorporates project information from the Neighbourly.com social network which acts as a matchmaking service between local projects and people who want to help. M&S is a founding partner of Neighbourly.com.

Connecting with this wider network enables M&S customers and employees to get involved with their local community, from spending time with the elderly, to renovating community facilities, it will enable them to take part in positive action in their own backyard. Through the digital platform people will also be empowered to promote their own community projects and in doing so find new sources of funding and collaboration partners to make a difference in the communities they live and work in.

M&S developed Spark Something Good following extensive research and dialogue which revealed that getting involved in community projects enhanced people’s lives.

Joanna Lumley, M&S Spark Something Good ambassador, comments: “This isn’t just about today or even tomorrow. It’s about the cumulative effect of people giving back to their community over time. We want to make people happy and spark a relay of good deeds across the nation and we need your help now! The potential is simply enormous.

“People tell us they’d like to support local charities and they want to give hands-on help and see lives being changed. Donating time is just as valuable as giving money and is often more rewarding.”

Marc Bolland, Marks & Spencer CEO, said: “M&S people and customers have always helped in their local community, by working together we know we can achieve even more by volunteering or making a donation to a charity that matters locally. We know the positive impact it can have and that a healthy high street needs a healthy community to support it. That’s why we’re making it easy to get involved and asking our people and customers to Spark Something Good.”

Nick Davies, Founder of Neighbourly adds: “Finding community projects and matching them to people willing to help has always been difficult. We have worked with Marks & Spencer to bring the latest digital technology to empower the public to get involved with community projects on their own doorsteps. Anyone can take part and importantly it’s about people with energy, good ideas and vision. You don’t need to be a formal charity to get your idea off the ground. You just need a bright idea for social good. With the help of M&S and Spark Something Good, we can then direct local energy and enthusiasm to exactly where it is needed.”

Whatever an individual’s passion – from photography to DIY and gardening to cookery – there will be something for everyone on the Neighbourly network so that people can ensure their skills are put to use in their communities.

Spark Something Good is part of Plan A, M&S’s ground-breaking eco and ethical programme. M&S has a long history of giving something back to the community. In the past seven years M&S has raised more than £50 million for charity partners, raised £15 million for Oxfam through its Shwopping initiative and encouraged its employees to volunteer by allowing an annual, paid volunteer day.

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Further information

UNITY PR, 0207 440 9810

hazel@hellounity.com, mariana@hellounity.com or alice@hellounity.com

About Plan A
Plan A is Marks & Spencer’s sustainable business plan that tackles both today’s and tomorrow’s sustainable retail challenges. Launched in 2007, the plan is focused on customer, employee and supplier engagement and includes commitments that tackle issues such as climate change, waste, raw materials, health and being a fair partner.

About Neighbourly
Neighbourly.com is the internet platform that connects local projects with people and organisations who want to help. They do this by breaking down traditional barriers to finding and giving help – neighbourly is a friendly network of companies, individuals, charities, councils, institutions and community groups.

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