Walmart China’s CSR Mission: A Retailer with a Strong Sense of Corporate Social Responsibility
Being a good corporate citizen, Walmart China is committed to helping Chinese people live a better life through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives in three main fields: Women’s Economic Empowerment, Children’s Food Safety &Nutrition， Sustainability & Community. We have donated funds and in-kind support worth over RMB 140 million to local charities and welfare organizations since entering the China market. Moreover, Walmart China associates have dedicated over 240, 000 hours to these activities.
Some of the signature CSR programs in the three main fields since 2010 are summarized as below:
Women’s Economic Empowerment
In September 2011, Walmart announced that it would take full advantage of its global business scale and supply chain network to initiate a new program to promote global women’s economic empowerment through providing more development opportunities for women and by cooperating with leaders from the governments, NGOs, charity organizations and the academic circle. By the end of 2016, the program aims to accomplish five goals, including:
Increase sourcing from women-owned businesses;
Empower women on farms and in factories through training, market access and career opportunities；
Empower women through job training and education；
Increase gender diversity among major suppliers；
Make significant philanthropic giving toward women’s economic empowerment
On December 8, 2016, WEConnect China 2016 Marketplace was held in Shenzhen. As the global partner and diamond sponsor of WEConnect International, Walmart has supported this marketplace for a consecutive of five years, and has partnered with WEConnect International China to hold training courses on women’s capability building, with an accumulated donation of more than RMB 1.55 Million in China. This year, Walmart China led female suppliers, who belong to the WOB (Women-owned Businesses) project, to attend this marketplace, and provided external training sessions and opportunities to meet with enterprises in both upstream and downstream of the supply chain.
On June 21, the course on new venture creation through e-commerce for Chinese women in poverty who are dedicated to retail business, which is part of the Retail Training Camp project funded by the Walmart Foundation, was launched in Nanchang, Jiangxi. This project aims to realize target-oriented poverty alleviation so that more rural women get to learn and master e-commerce, which is an innovative online retail skill and that rural women in poverty may benefit from this poverty alleviation project through e-commerce.
On December 3, 2015, WEConnect 2015 Marketplace was held in Shanghai, with the support and donation from Walmart. As the global partner of WEConnect International, Walmart has supported this marketplace for four consecutive years with an accumulated donation of RMB 1.10 million to empower participating women entrepreneurs seeking market collaborative opportunities.
On November 7, 2015, at the 17th plenary session of China Chain Store & Franchise Association (CCFA), Walmart China and CCFA signed an official agreement on the nationwide charity project themed “Retail Training Camp”. Walmart China will donate US$1.5 million (app. RMB 9.5 mil.) to CCFA over the next two years for the training of 15,000 medium and high-level vocational school students in China in several batches. Over half of these students will be women. The training is designed to enhance students’ retail operational capability over a period of four days, so as to lay a foundation of knowledge for them to be either engaged in retail or retail-related jobs, or open up their own small-scaled retail stores.
On Oct. 22, 2015, Walmart hosted a ceremony entitled “Empower Women, Embrace the Future,” to announce continued commitment to the company’s Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) initiatives in China. Walmart China announced that it would continue to support @Her New Venture Project – Walmart’s Revolving Fund for Mothers’ New Ventures Program, a program initiated by the China Women’s Development Foundation. Walmart also further announced it would be launching Walmart’s Women's Retail Training Camp Program (simply called “Women Retail Training program). By the end of 2016, Walmart will have provided a total of 91.3 Million RMB in donations in China through the program.
On Sept.23, 2015, Walmart Foundation and BSR announced milestones in the Women in Factories (WiF) training program in China. The program includes women working in the selected factories to receive foundational training, which provides core life skills, including financial planning, maternal health and career development. Through this training, 100 high-potential women will be selected at each factory (a total of 4,500 women) to receive an additional 100 hours of Advanced Training, focusing on career and leadership.
On 24 October 2014, Walmart China announced another donation of RMB 10 million to the China Women’s Development Foundation (CWDF) to continue supporting CWDF’s “Revolving Fund for Mothers’ New Ventures” project over the next 3 years. The donation will be used to provide funding and technical support to women’s engagement in farming and related industries in impoverished areas, help impoverished women create ventures and promote industrialization and sustainability of local agriculture. It is the fifth time Walmart China donates to CWDF’s Revolving Fund for Mothers’ New Ventures since October 2010.
On 7 August 2014 Walmart China launched the Future Retail Star Training program in collaboration with China Chain Store and Franchise Association (CCFA) in Beijing. Walmart announced a three-year partnership with CCFA with a donation of RMB 5 Million to support this Future Retail Star Training program in the period of 2014-2016. The initial donation of RMB 1 million will be used for project kickoff and preparation in 2014. This program will mainly target secondary vocational school students with majors in chain store operation, marketing and other specialties in commerce and trade. According to project plan, by the end of 2016, a total of 200 in-service teachers and 20,000 students, more than half of whom will be female teachers and female students, will receive training in order to meet the increasing demand for entry-level retail professional staff.
Now in its second year in 2014 and endowed by a Walmart Foundation gift of $3.7 million, the three-year “Training Smallholder Apple Farmers in China for Sustainable Production and Domestic Market Access” project combines the expertise of Cornell and UC Davis faculty and extension specialists with counterparts from the National Apple Research System in China, Shandong Agricultural University, Northwest A&F University, and the Provincial Agricultural Extension Bureaus of Shandong and Shaanxi provinces in order to sustainably increase domestic apple production. Training sessions were successively held in March 2014 in Yantai, Shandong and in Yangling, Shaanxi.
On 15 November 2013, Walmart China donated a further RMB 2 million (USD 328,200) to the China Women’s Development Foundation (CWDF), providing continued support for the CWDF’s “Revolving Fund for Mothers’ New Ventures” project. The ceremony marked the launch of the second round selection of the 2013 “Mothers’ New Ventures” program sites and the “Sourcing from Women Farmers” merchandising intention was officially proposed as well. “Sourcing from Women Farmers” feasibility discussion was also presented during the donation ceremony.
On 24 October 2012 Walmart donated RMB 3 million to the China Youth Development Foundation to be used in establishing the “Walmart China’s Retail Talent Development Fund”. This public welfare training fund will be used at BN Vocational Schools across the country to train retail talents with more than half being female students, promote the Chinese edition of the retail training course material jointly developed by Walmart and International Youth Foundation’s (IYF) , and award excellent students at BN Vocational School with the “Walmart Retail Talent Scholarship.”
On October 12, 2012, Walmart China and the China Women’s Development Foundation (CWDF) signed a donation agreement at Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture, Yunnan Province. According to the agreement, Walmart China will donate another RMB 2 million to the program themed “Revolving Fund for Mother’s New Ventures”, a program initiated by CWDF to help poor Chinese women start their own businesses and become reemployed.
Children’s Food Safety & Nutrition
Walmart China Children’s Food Safety Initiatives
Walmart will carry out a children’s food safety program in partnership with China Children and Teenagers’ Foundation, which is an important portion of the National Campaign on the Safeguarding of Children’s Food Safety. It is designed to promote the awareness of children’s food safety and improve children’s behaviors and habits through food safety education on children in the forms of “walking into families, schools and communities”. This program will be officially launched by the end of 2016.
Walmart China Nutritious Meal Program
Walmart China has always been caring for the improvement of nutritious conditions and healthy growth of children in China. Since 2011, Walmart cooperated with a few major suppliers to launch the “Love Relay” campaign to support the Nutritious Meals program, which was initiated by China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation. Walmart hopes to enhance its commitment to children in poverty-stricken areas by effectively improving their nutritious conditions and health.
Since 2011, Walmart China in collaboration with customers and suppliers, has made accumulated donation in the amount of RMB 10 million to Nutritious Meals program, providing 1.7 million portions of nutritious meals to some 10,000 students in 28 elementary schools in Ya’an Prefecture of Sichuan, Shilin County of Yunnan, Weining County of Guizhou, Jianghua County of Hunan and Lingyun County of Guangxi as well as kitchenware benefiting 4,395 students in 21 elementary schools in Shilin County of Yunnan, Weining County of Guizhou, Jianghua County of Hunan and Longhua County of Hebei.
While providing better service and quality goods to customers, Walmart actively shoulders the social responsibility of sustainability and protecting the environment. Walmart keeps improving sustainability practices in its operations in China that would have benefits throughout the supply chain. In 2005 Walmart launched its Sustainability 360 Program demonstrating that sustainability has become an essential ingredient to its global strategy, maintaining goals to be supplied 100 percent by renewable energy; create zero waste; and sell products that sustain people and the environment.
Walmart China’s major sustainability initiatives include:
Sustainable Consumption Advocacy with China Chain Store &Franchise Association (CCFA) in Sustainable Roundtable
Energy-saving remodeling in stores
Environmental protection and green consumption advocacy
In Mar 2016，in order to encourage energy saving and sustainability to community and customers, Walmart China participated in the “Earth Hour” activity. All Walmart China stores operate in 1/3 lighting for one hour on 19 Mar. It is also the first time that Walmart China kicks off the “Energy Saving Week” from 19 Mar to 25 Mar. During the “Energy Saving Week”, Walmart placed posters to advertise to customers and staff about energy saving and environment protection, encouraging customers to buy more sustainability items in store.
From 2013 to 2015, Walmart China has invested about 450 million RMB in the store energy projects, including LED, HVAC, Heat Reclaim and Ref improving. The accumulated energy saved in 3 years is about 500million KWH, equaling the electricity consumed by more than 105,000 families in a year，decreasing CO2 emission 167000 tons.
On August 11, 2015, Walmart China held a launch ceremony themed “ 2015 Energy Efficiency and Low Carbon Caravan Entering Walmart” and “2015 Sustainable Consumption Communication Week”, in support of the themed activity of “Green Life, Wise Consumption”, a green sustainable consumption communication week kicked off by China Chain Store & Franchise Association (CCFA), WWF and China Retail Sustainable Development Roundtable.
On May 8, 2015, the Walmart Foundation announced in Beijing an $875,000 grant to The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) to expand their recent efforts to support Chinese businesses in identifying and capturing sustainability improvement opportunities in Chinese product supply chains.
From 2013 to 2015, Walmart China has invested about 460 million RMB in the store energy projects, including LED, HVAC, Heat Reclaim and Ref improving. The accumulated energy saved in 3 years is expected to be 397million KWH.
During the press conference on October 25, 2012，Walmart further strengthened its commitment to a sustainable global supply chain by announcing a series of initiatives to make its global supply chain more sustainable, and emphasizing its goal of promoting the Sustainability Index within its global supply chain. Walmart announced that the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in global supply chain by 2015 will be 20 million tons, which is equal to reducing over 3.8 million cars on the road in a year. In daily operations, Walmart distribution centers not only control cost but also reduce emissions of greenhouse gas such as carbon dioxide by loading trucks with merchandise on their return trip and freight consolidation.
On 1 April 2011 Walmart China launched its nationwide sustainability campaign themed “2011 Walmart Earth Month”, in six Chinese cities, including Beijing, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Xi’an, Wuhan and Xiamen. With the theme “Go green with no plastic bags，the campaign was held in more than 210 Walmart hypermarkets across China, calling on people from different walks of life to reduce the use of plastic bags, and encourages the use of reusable bags in some pilot cities.
Walmart has a long history of community involvement leveraging its extensive distribution of stores and vast number of associates, engaging associates in volunteer activities including caring for the elderly, the disabled and left-behind children. Walmart is also actively involved in disaster relief through donating cash and inkind goods in a timely fashion to the disaster-affected areas in order to help local communities build resiliency.
On October 27, 2016, at Walmart China’s 20th year anniversary celebration, the company officially announced the establishment of Walmart China Volunteer Association, striving to make more contributions for public welfare while continuously growing its business.
On Oct.25, 2016, Walmart China associate volunteers conducted a themed activity of “Hand in Hand with Walmart, Let Us Serve Our Communities” in Shenzhen Children’s Hospital, bringing sick children interesting food safety knowledge. This event also marked the successful ending of this themed event of “Volunteer 20 Hours on Walmart China’s 20th Anniversary” since May 2016. In the course of the event, over 5300 associate volunteers in more than 400 Walmart stores nationwide donated a total voluntary hours of over 20,000.
On August 16, 2016, Walmart China and Walmart Foundation made a joint announcement of donation in the amount of RMB 2 million to One Foundation on disaster relief and post-disaster reconstruction. This donation will be used for the construction of six children’s centers in the provinces of Hubei, Anhui and Fujian, which will provide disaster education service and psychological counseling. These children’s centers will also distribute more than 3000 nutrition packs of rice and cooking oil as well as 3000 emergency healthcare kits to victims.
On July 20, over 20 Walmart China associate volunteers went to Dalian BN Vocational School, teaching retail-related courses and interacted with students including decorating cakes and counting banknotes. This event is an important milestone in Walmart North China in the themed event in 2016 called “Hand in Hand with Walmart, Let Us Serve Our Communities – Volunteer 20 Hours on Walmart China’s 20th Anniversary”.
On June 23, soon after the outbreak of the tornado in Funing County, Yancheng, Jiangsu , Walmart contacted the local administration and social organizations in due course on relief matters, and donated 300 family emergency relief packages to the disaster-stricken area through its partner One Foundation, including blankets, raincoats, flashlights, and towels, etc. totaling 16 items of daily necessities. Walmart delivered these family emergency relief packages from a Nanjing Walmart store to the disaster-stricken area within 24 hours.
On May 25, 2016, Walmart held a “20 voluntary hours on 20th anniversary of Walmart China” themed event of Hand in Hand with Walmart, Let Us Serve Our Communities in Dengjia Hope School located in Qiang Nationality Autonomous County in Beichuan, Sichuan. David Fu, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Walmart China, and some Walmart China associate volunteers attended the event and held interactive games with the elementary school students at Dengjia Hope School.
On May 12, 2016, a themed event of “Hand in Hand with Walmart, Let Us Enhance Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation” was held in Zhichunlu Supercenter of Walmart in Beijing. It is also a ceremony of Walmart to make donations of clothes for disaster preparedness to China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation (CFPA). Leveraging the 8th National Day for Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation, Walmart China donated shoes, clothes and other inkinds on disaster preparedness worth RMB 7.8 mil. to CFPA to enrich reservation of goods on disaster preparedness of the foundation in its warehouses so as to provide emergency relief in time of disasters.
On April 17, in the advent of the two-year anniversary of the Ya’an Earthquake, Walmart China, in collaboration with the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation, launched the completion ceremony for the “Walmart Community Center” in Ya’an.
On 30 May 2014 onions from Dongchuan, Kunming hit the market 10 days later this year, which resulted in a poor sale. Learning about this from the media, Walmart worked with the local government and procured 10 tons of onions from the farmers. Onions whose quality met standards have been put on sale at fair prices at 10 Walmart stores in Kunming. The onions were quite popular among customers.
On 27 December 2013 the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of the “Social Community Center” is held in Yong’an Village, Xinhua Township, Tianquan County, Ya’an City, Sichuan Province. The community center is donated by Walmart China, in collaboration with China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation (CFPA). This is also a significant achievement of Walmart China in its post-disaster relief initiative since the outbreak of the Ya’an Earthquake which occurred on April 20, 2013. Walmart China, in collaboration with CFPA, donated to the construction of two social community centers respectively located in Yong’an Village, Xinhua Township and Hongyan Village, Laochang Township, both of which were heavily devastated in the earthquake. At the ground-breaking ceremony, Walmart associated volunteers brought to the over 200 households in Yong’an Village, who suffered from the earthquake, New Year presents.
In August, 2013, Walmart China actively allocated disaster relief supplies from all 28 Walmart stores in Northeast China, and donated RMB 204,000 in relief supplies to the disaster-stricken areas in Heilongjiang through the Charity Federation of Heilongjiang Province.
In April 2013, Walmart China donated cash and in-kind supplies worth RMB 2,000,000 to the earthquake stricken areas in Ya’an in Sichuan Province through China Foundation for Poverty alleviation.
On 30 December 2011 Walmart China, in collaboration with Weibo.com of Sina, launched a charity event on Weibo.com themed"@Sunny Communities"(Weibo: http://weibo.com/wmcsr),in search of 365 touching and respectful figures in our neighborhood and to present them with new year’s gift packages. As of the end of February, 2012 it has received great attention. During this period, Walmart has launched nearly 300 micro charity activities in stores in over 140 cities nationwide.