The Co-operative Pharmacy has raised £100,000 for UNICEF, the world’s leading children’s organisation, at a recent charity dinner hosted by ITV Granada journalist and presenter, Paul Crone.
The fantastic sum was generated by holding a raffle and auction amongst staff and suppliers at Manchester Cathedral last Friday (24 September). UNICEF UK ambassador, Ewan McGregor, thanked The Co-operative Pharmacy for supporting the charity and helping to champion the issue of sanitation through its involvement with a UNICEF community development project in Togo, West Africa.
As part of its recently launched ethical strategy,* The Co-operative Pharmacy has pledged £300,000 over the next three years to support a project that will help to improve sanitation in 300 villages in Togo, improving the health of an estimated 110,000 children and their families.
John Nuttall, Managing Director of The Co-operative Pharmacy, said: “As a co-operative business we are concerned with more than just pursuing profit and our responsibilities do not stop at caring for communities in the UK.
“A recent appraisal of world anti-poverty targets at the United Nations Millennium Development Goals Review meeting indicated that sanitation is one of the areas in most need of urgent attention. As an ethical business, we strongly believe in doing our bit to help improve this issue.”
Verity Rowles, Head of Corporate Partnerships, UNICEF UK spoke at the event and commented: “I’d like to thank Co-operative Pharmacy staff and suppliers for the tremendous support they have given. Their fundraising efforts will help to make a real difference in the lives of vulnerable children and their families in Togo. Poor sanitation is a major contributor to the 1.5 million children who die each year in the developing world. Partnerships such as that between UNICEF UK and The Co-operative Pharmacy represent a practical commitment to saving and improving children’s lives.”
Co-operative Pharmacy branches continue to raise money for the charity and customers can support UNICEF’s work by making a donation at any branch.
For further information contact:
Senior Public Relations Officer
The Co-operative Group
Notes to editors
*The Co-operative Pharmacy ethical strategy reinforces the organisation’s commitment to responsible retailing, combating climate change and to caring for communities.
The Co-operative Pharmacy was the first UK pharmacy to introduce Braille onto own label medicine packaging.
Community projects have involved helping homeless people to stay safe in the sun and offering a targeted medicine check to Muslim patients during the month of Ramadan.
All pharmacy branches purchase renewable energy and with the launch of the National Distribution Centre in 2009, The Co-operative Pharmacy is now able to recycle 30 per cent more cardboard and plastic.
About The Co-operative
Part of The Co-operative Group – the world’s largest consumer co-operative – The Co-operative Pharmacy is the UK’s third largest pharmacy retail chain with nearly 800 branches.
The Co-operative Group stands apart from other major retailers in the UK as a business which is owned, not by a small group of shareholders, but by more than five million consumers. With core interests in food, financial services, travel, pharmacy, funerals and farms, it has an annual turnover of £14 billion, employs 123,000 staff and operates over 5,000 retail trading outlets handling more than 20 million weekly transactions.
Following the acquisition of the Somerfield supermarket chain in March 2009, The Co-operative Food is the fifth largest food retailer. The Co-operative Financial Services is one of the largest and most diversified financial mutual businesses, operating The Co-operative Bank, The Co-operative Insurance and Britannia.
The Co-operative is the UK’s number one provider of funeral services, the third largest retail pharmacy chain, a leading travel retailer, supplying the travel needs of more than three million people annually, and is the UK’s largest farmer.
Among its other businesses are The Co-operative Motor Group, The Co-operative Electrical and The Co-operative Legal Services.
About the UNICEF sanitation project:
According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper for Togo, published for the period 2009-2011, 68% of families do not have access to or do not use latrines. In order to promote basic sanitation and reduce water-borne diseases in Togo, the UNICEF project, supported by The Co-operative Pharmacy, will introduce the Community Led Total Sanitation (CTLS) approach, encouraging communities and schools to examine their own state in terms of hygiene and sanitation, their practices in terms of defecation and management of their school environment. The approach is designed to mobilise communities into reaching and maintaining an ‘open defecation free’ status in 300 villages in the Savanes, Kara and Maritime regions of Togo.
UNICEF is the world’s leading organisation working for children and their rights in more than 190 countries. As champion of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, UNICEF works to help every child realise their full potential. Together with our partners, UNICEF delivers health care, nutrition, education and protection to children in urgent need, while working with governments to ensure they deliver on their promise to protect and promote the rights of every child. UNICEF relies entirely on voluntary donations from individuals, governments, institutions and corporations, and is not funded by the UN budget. For more information, please visit www.unicef.org.uk.