For many of our programs, Associates contribute to our outreach efforts through donations, volunteering, and conducting fundraising events. In 2020, many of these efforts were adapted due to COVID-19.
For almost 20 years, our U.S. Associates have pledged to the United Way in our annual workplace campaign to help provide families and children with opportunities for a better quality of life. Historically, more than 30,000 Associates have participated each year, resulting in substantial contributions to the United Way. In addition, typically, Associates at our TJX corporate headquarters volunteer at a variety of events, from one-day, on-site programs, to weekly participation, such as through Big Brothers/Big Sisters. This year, we continued our Big Brother/Big Sisters and Read to a Child programs virtually. We also held several virtual events with Cradles to Crayons and Jumpstart, which included collecting and donating clothing and virtual and socially distanced book reading with children in their communities.
Our U.S. Associates are also actively engaged in supporting other causes. In some cases, activities that may have started as smaller, localized efforts have now grown into more substantial campaigns that occur across the country. For example, our U.S. Loss Prevention group leads Associate participation in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks each fall. In 2020, with walks going virtual, this group rallied together 37 teams across the country. Cumulatively, the teams have raised over $1.5 million in funding for breast cancer research and support over the past 11 years.
In 2020, as part of TJX Canada’s community initiative, Find Your Stride, Associates from across the business volunteered to host a variety of online training sessions to help support the efforts of our community partners who were forced to put in-person programming on hold. Eleven virtual sessions were held on topics including preparing for job interviews, dressing professionally, and building self-confidence.
Additionally, Winners, Marshalls, and HomeSense in Canada have been official sponsors of a number of Pride festivals across the country since 2007and have supported the LGBTQ community for many years. While festivals were canceled in 2020, TJX Canada continued to provide donations to various Pride organizations around the country in order to support their work.
Throughout 2020, Associates engaged in department-wide efforts to support causes they were passionate about including fundraising, litter cleanups, collecting food for food banks, and helping out one of our national charity partners during the holiday season.
We are very proud to have Associates around the world who volunteer their time and who are committed to doing good in their communities.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE: THE COMMUNITY FUND
Across Europe, our Associates are amazing supporters of our charitable partners, volunteering and fundraising millions of dollars to support thousands of vulnerable children and young people living in our local communities. Through the Community Fund, part of the T.K. Maxx and Homesense Foundation, Associates in our stores, Processing Centers, and offices throughout Europe can apply for a donation on behalf of a charity that they are passionate about whose mission is to help vulnerable children and young people achieve their potential. In 2020, in an effort to provide more support to organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic, we were able to help nearly 1,500 charities, more than quadrupling the number of charities supported the year before. Donations were made to a variety of organizations including children’s hospices, mental health charities, children’s cancer care centers, foodbanks, and homeless services.