RWRC – the home of Retail Week and World Retail Congress – retailTRUST and the British Retail Consortium have joined forces to raise £10m for retail staff who are facing financial distress as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The ‘CaRe20 – Caring for Retail during Covid-19’ campaign aims to raise vital funds to provide financial, emotional, physical and vocational support to retail workers who may be ineligible for government support during the health emergency.

CaRe20 will offer a lifeline to those on retail’s front line who are putting their customers’ health and wellbeing before their own, including contractors and temporary staff, those who have already been left out of work and employees who may need more than just financial help.

CaRe20 logo

Support CaRe20 today to help the UK’s shop workers during the Covid-19 pandemic

Retailers can help fund the appeal by contacting Claire Greenwood.

Individuals can donate to the CaRe20 appeal here.

How retailers treat their workers during this pandemic will define their brand for decades to come – join with RWRC, retailTRUST and the BRC to provide much-needed aid and assistance to the industry.

Emotional and physical support will also be required by some of those who still have jobs as they cope with the stress of meeting heightened demand in essential stores and risking exposure to Covid-19 on a daily basis.

The money raised through CaRe20 will support thousands of people working in retail through a host of initiatives, including:

  • Financial grants to help with food, essential bills, childcare and other necessities
  • Telephone and online counselling to help those with stress and anxiety
  • Support with physical exercise and tips
  • Upskilling and retraining for those facing redundancy or seeking a new role
  • Online self-help tools and resources through myrtwellbeing.org.uk

Funds will also be made available to employees of retail’s supporting industries, including the thousands working in the food distribution, pharmaceutical and medical supply sectors, who are all making huge sacrifices to keep shelves stacked and customers serviced. Those working in logistics, warehousing and other areas of the supply chain are also working exceptionally long hours to keep vital supplies available.

CaRe20 will offer a lifeline to those on retail’s front line who are putting their customers’ health and wellbeing before their own

All of these workers are putting the health and wellbeing of their communities first so that everyone can buy the essential supplies they need during these difficult times.

Many others are being made redundant, put on unpaid leave or self-isolating themselves or with their families, unable to work. These people will find work difficult to come by or may not have jobs to go back to. The BRC says around 150,00 retail workers have already lost their jobs this year as a result of the pandemic.

The UK government has already committed to financially supporting retained employees who cannot work with an 80% subsidy up to £2,500 a month – but retailTRUST, RWRC and the BRC believe this will not come close to solving the real problems.

retailTRUST chief executive Richard Boland said: “Covid-19 has created unprecedented challenges for society and the retail community. How we all care for each other will define how well the nation will come out of this in the future.

”We are experiencing unprecedented demand for our online services, especially via myrtwellbeing.org.uk, and we are ready with emergency funding to support all involved, but the length and depth of the need for support will dwarf anything we have seen in the last 100 years. We need your help.”

Chris Brook-Carter, managing director of RWRC by Ascential and incoming chief executive of retailTRUST, added: “We have seen from the start of this crisis that retail and the millions of colleagues who work in the sector will be critical in the UK’s response to Covid-19. However, what is also apparent is the damage it can do to so many households – financially, physically and mentally – who rely on retail for their incomes.

“This appeal has the capacity to support the many colleagues who are ensuring vital stores and supply chains are kept open over coming weeks, while also acting as a safety net for those who are now facing financial and psychological distress as a result of a loss of income.

“I am sure we will see retail at its very best over the coming weeks and this appeal will be a shining example of the values and commitment to its people we know underpin this industry.”

CaRe20 logo

Support CaRe20 today to help the UK’s shop workers during the Covid-19 pandemic

Retailers can help fund the appeal by contacting Claire Greenwood.

Individuals can donate to the CaRe20 appeal here.

How retailers treat their workers during this pandemic will define their brand for decades to come – join with RWRC, retailTRUST and the BRC to provide much-needed aid and assistance to the industry.