Auchan Youth Foundation
to change lives…
The Auchan Youth Foundation was formed 20 years ago and works in 13 Auchan Retail countries. Today, in keeping with our goal to be “Campaigners for good, healthy, local products”, the foundation supports community projects that focus on healthy eating and access to healthcare for the target population: young people in need living in the neighbourhoods and cities in which our stores are located. The actions of the foundations are adapted to best meet local needs in each country and all employees are encouraged to get involved.
Vision screening programmes for children in need living in the Sibiu region (Romania), creation of a vegetable garden at a centre for disabled children close to the Nowy Sacz store (Poland), healthy living programmes at the Castelo Branco children’s centre (Portugal), reworking of recipes at school cantines in Kiev (Ukraine) and healthy eating awareness initiatives led by 33 employees at the Luy Ban Bich store for the children of Hô Chi Minh City (Vietnam).
In 2018, the Foundation provided 11 million euros to support 96 projects that helped more than 30,000 young people throughout the world. The Foundation also decided to add a “giving” dimension to the “AuchanRun” initiative, which made it possible to raise 55,700 euros for the charity SOS Children’s Villages in the countries in which we operate.
«Auchan Retail’s employees are key participants in the Auchan Youth Foundation and management encourages them to get involved. Such actions instil a sense of pride and open the mind, giving extra meaning to their work. What’s more, the young people and associations that receive funding from the Foundation to put their plans into action are given recognition and solutions to their needs. It helps each individual to better fulfil their role within the company. »
Alain Reners, Executive Director of the Auchan Youth Foundation
to work as closely as possible with associations
The work of the Foundation is carried out through delegation. As first-line points of contact with the various people and structures on the ground, the employees at Auchan Retail’s stores, warehouses and sites are both catalysts and key participants in the actions of the Auchan Youth Foundation. The joint applications submitted by the associations and partner stores are examined by the members of the country selection committees, who decide on which projects to fund. They listen to the people behind the project, examine the projects that have been preselected and reviewed by the Foundation’s team and decide on which ones should be backed.
This gives the country committees more leeway by enabling them to select the projects that will be supported, come up with the most suitable responses to the needs of local associations and operate in a more pragmatic manner. The process is as follows:
- the store teams choose and investigate the projects to be supported and work closely with the people on the ground;
- depending on the number of applications received, a national selection committee may meet to decide on which projects to support. a dialogue makes it possible to better understand the social difficulties encountered and the nature of the needs expressed, before deciding whether the Foundation can provide financial support;
- once a project is approved, the store managers and their employees become involved and support it over the long term.
Weave Our Future Foundation
Supporting social progress
through a unique approach
The Weave Our Future (WOF) Foundation was formed in 2014 on the initiative of Auchan Retail as part of a strong long-term commitment: to help improve the working and living conditions of workers in developing and emerging countries, as well as their families, particularly in countries from which textiles are sourced. This initiative is a true social laboratory and also involves local manufacturers and NGOs in Vietnam, Bangladesh and Cambodia.
Weave our Future is a unique approach for a retail group. It is intended to serve as a social laboratory, on its own level, one that can bring other partners on board, such as factory owners, in order to made concrete and lasting changes in the living and working conditions of as many people as possible. It works in the areas of healthcare, social welfare, training and mediation. In Vietnam, for instance, the “Phu Nu” (“Woman”) project coordinated by the GRET NGO opens up a dialogue between workers, human resources personnel at factories, housing owners and social services to help workers understand their rights and to best ascertain their needs. In Bangladesh, two pilot healthcare coverage schemes have been launched with the NGOs GK Savar and BADAS. With WOF’s support, 16,000 workers now have healthcare coverage. The target is to bring this figure up to 25,000 in the space of 4 years.
Through the work of WOF, Auchan Retail is now a trusted partner of the International Labour Organization. The agreement entered into between the WOF Foundation and the International Labour Office of Cambodia was the first public-private social welfare partnership in the developing world. The two partners have joined forces to promote the new social welfare system put in place by the Cambodian government. The system has been tested since 2016 with industry workers, notably in the textile industry. The plan is to extend the scheme to their families, including their own parents, and then to very small businesses, including those operating in the informal sector, ultimately becoming the country’s general social welfare system. WOF was involved in the first phase of the advertising campaign to promote the scheme among more than 1 million workers throughout the country. The information is also provided to workers by the 18 educational centres in libraries run by the SIPAR NGO in 20 factories, which WOF has been supporting since 2015 alongside the French development agency (AFD).
Find our more on the Weave Our Future Foundation