Business Charity Awards: Long-term partnership – Marks & Spencer with Breast Cancer Now

Awarded to an outstanding ongoing partnership between a company and a UK charity that has lasted, or will last, more than 10 years

What was the partnership?

Breast Cancer Now and Marks & Spencer (M&S) have worked together for 20 years. Five years ago they decided to focus on preventing breast cancer, supporting women to reduce their risks of developing the disease, and making positive changes for people affected by breast cancer.

What did it do?

M&S and Breast Cancer Now collaborated in the design of a range of post-surgery bras, with the help of an expert panel of women with lived experience of breast cancer.

Tailored health information is available from both Breast Cancer Now and M&S channels, while a behaviour change programme gave colleagues and customers specific information and action plans on how to make changes and lower their risks.

M&S colleagues maximised the impact of in-store campaigns, particularly during the bra fitting service, contributing to a 47 per cent increase in customers' knowledge of Breast Cancer Now's Touch Look Check (TLC) breast health messaging.

Why did it win?

In the past five years, M&S has donated more than £13m through the sale of women's clothing and lingerie, employee fundraising and Sparks loyalty scheme donations. It is the biggest contributor in the UK to breast cancer prevention research.

Breast Cancer Now has made more than 50 world-class scientific discoveries about the causes of breast cancer, all attributable to M&S-funded research

What did the judges say?

The judges praised the clear mission and tight focus of the partnership, calling it “deep, structural and strategic.”


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