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Communities



Burberry’s history of supporting others is rooted in the altruism of our founder, Thomas Burberry. Throughout his life, he used his success as a way to contribute to society. We continue his legacy today, championing our communities, in particular young people, and working with organisations making a positive impact around the world.

PEOPLE SUPPORTED BY PROGRAMMES LED BY THE BURBERRY FOUNDATION

1,200,000+

Our five-year Communities agenda focused on supporting and empowering local communities across our value chain, with a goal to positively impact 1 million people by 2022.

 

Working with NGO partners and community-based organisations, and funded via The Burberry Foundation, we are proud to have met our target to positively impact the lives of over 1 million people over the past five years.

Our programmes focused on three strategic impact areas:

  1. Tackling educational inequality and building cultural capital
  2. Fostering community cohesion and employability skills
  3. Supporting economic and social empowerment

 

Fostering community cohesion and employability skills

Oxfam Italy | Elvis & Kresse | Progetto Quid via The Burberry Foundation

219,456 positively impacted between 2017-2022

  • 96% of beneficiaries stated they had better knowledge of services in the community*
  • 96% of beneficiaries stated they felt able to access services in the community*
  • 99% of beneficiaries stated they found the community facilitators and helpdesks a useful service in the area*

 

Tackling educational inequality and building cultural capital

Teach First | The Careers & Enterprise Company | Connectr | Burberry Inspire Programme | London Youth via The Burberry Foundation

658,121 positively impacted between 2017-2022

  • 82% of the students interviewed about their experience of in-person activities linked their participation in the programme to an increased sense of self-confidence*
  • 73% of the students interviewed noted increased creativity of one form or another after taking part in the programme*
  • 82% of teachers felt that their careers guidance and advice improved as a result of their engagement in the programme*

 

Supporting social and economic empowerment

Oxfam & Pur Projet via The Burberry Foundation

124,357 positively impacted between 2017-2022

  • 28% of herders engaged in the community owned cashmere groups were women*
  • 136% increase in the volume of cashmere collected reported by herders*
  • 95% of herders demonstrated gender awareness after training, compared to 79% in the baseline study conducted in FY 2017/18*

* Denotes the impact evaluation results of a sample of direct beneficiaries surveyed across each of the programmes



BURBERRY BEYOND

DRAWING ON OUR HERITAGE OF EXPLORATION AND THROUGH OUR CREATIVE SPIRIT, WE COMMIT TO CONTINUALLY EVOLVE, INNOVATE AND DEFY CONVENTION TO BUILD A BRIGHTER FUTURE FOR GENERATIONS TO COME. 

We are committed to having a positive impact on our people and communities. We are collating information about the work we do across our business, from protecting and nurturing luxury craftmanship skills, to driving progress towards our diversity, equity and inclusion ambitions, in order to establish and evaluate the full picture of our impact on people within and beyond our company. 

Learn about our People here

 

 


BACKING BRIGHTER FUTURES

DEVELOPING LITERACY: AN INITIATIVE ANCHORED IN COMMUNITY, TO HELP SHAPE THE FUTURE

Caring for our people and our communities is intrinsic to who we are as a company. We open spaces for aspirations to become reality and support those who face disadvantages so that their potential can be fulfilled.

In 2021, we announced our support for organisations in the UK, USA, Japan and Hong Kong S.A.R., China, committed to helping disadvantaged children develop their literacy skills. By providing funding to transform school libraries and donating books, we aimed to ensure children had access to safe environments and resources. 

UNITED KINGDOM

In the UK, we partnered with English international footballer and youth advocate Marcus Rashford MBE and the National Literacy Trust (NLT) to support literacy among young people. With the NLT, we focused on helping libraries in primary schools provide young people with the literacy skills they need to fulfil their ambitions. The funding went towards transforming library spaces in 10 schools across Manchester, Yorkshire and London, positively impacting the lives of over 3,500 children.

All 10 schools participated in the Marcus Rashford Book Club, a programme created by Marcus and Macmillan Children’s Books to encourage and nurture a love of reading among children. The schools also received a donation of 8,000 books, enabling children to benefit from further teaching materials, a variety of literature and activities. Curated by the NLT and provided by Macmillan Children’s Books and other publishers, the selection of illustrated, award-winning fiction and non-fiction books represented a range of experiences, backgrounds and interests. Dedicated training and access to NLT resources were also provided to 200 teachers across the country during FY 2021/22.

UNITED STATES

In the USA, we continued to build upon our existing partnership with Wide Rainbow to provide access to arts education in underserved neighbourhoods. Our funding will help to create 15 libraries across New York City and its outer boroughs, as well as three larger libraries in Los Angeles, Detroit and NYC, with each unique space receiving over 100 children’s books.

The Wide Rainbow Library Project, in collaboration with Detroit-based curator and art educator Asma Walton of the Black Art Library, and design duo Melissa and Amanda Shin of Shin Shin Architecture, creates libraries for youth and families living in under-resourced communities.

AROUND THE WORLD

Our funding for the Bring Me a Book Hong Kong initiative provided over 500 books to youth centres in the region and bespoke storytelling workshops for the organisation’s volunteers. Meanwhile, our ongoing support for the Japan School Library Association helps increase book donations to school libraries across the country.

These programmes continue Burberry’s long history of supporting communities and championing access to experiences that enable imagination and creativity to flourish. By investing in creative spaces that expand children’s worlds through reading, we aim to nurture their curiosity and make them aware of their own potential so they take their first steps to becoming the innovators, creators and leaders of the future.

TACKLING EDUCATIONAL INEQUALITY AND BUILDING CULTURAL CAPITAL

We believe diversity of thought, experience and voice opens spaces for new ideas to thrive, fuelling creativity and enabling us to fulfil our purpose. Over the last five years, a key focus of The Burberry Foundation has been to open career pathways within the creative industries and unlock opportunities for young people who may not otherwise have had access to or felt equipped to pursue a career in this arena. 

The Burberry Foundation continued its partnership with leading education charities Teach First, The Careers & Enterprise Company and Connectr, with the goal of opening up opportunities to young people from disadvantaged communities in Yorkshire, where our iconic Burberry Trench Coat is manufactured, and London, where we have our head office. 

  • During FY 2021/22, 197,950 students and teachers engaged in a variety of virtual and in-person activities and training sessions with the aim of inspiring young people by expanding their career horizons and developing core employability skills.
  • In the five years up to the end of FY 2021/22, over 650,000  students and teachers were positively impacted across these programmes.
  • More than 10,000 teachers in the UK took part in Continuing Professional Development sessions, Career Leaders programmes and National Professional Qualifications.
  • More than 50,000 students attended  virtual and in-person engagement activities such as guest speaker sessions, inspiration days, online challenges and career workshops.

BURBERRY INSPIRE

Burberry Inspire, which first launched in Yorkshire in 2018 and expanded to New York City in 2020, measures the impact of enhancing young people’s access to cultural capital by connecting eminent arts organisations with schools. 

Schools participating in the programme are allocated an Artist in Residence from a cultural organisation every year, providing students with wide-ranging, hands-on experience of different areas of the creative arts, such as theatre, dance, art and film. Artists in Residence work with teachers and students to deliver experiences, workshops and co-created events within their local communities. 

Both programmes are independently evaluated by our research partners, the Office of Research, Evaluation and Program Support (REPS) of the City University of New York and The Policy Institute at King’s College London, to study the impact of the immersive arts and creative education programme on students’ development for the purpose of supporting longer-term adaptation within schools. 

  • During FY 2021/22, 7537 students from 15 different schools were engaged through the programme. 
  • Over the last four years, Burberry Inspire assisted 10,000 students to access the arts, develop their creativity and think positively about their futures.

The programme successfully provided many students who otherwise would not have had opportunities to engage with the arts to do so while also gaining employability skills. The programme contributed to increasing students’ awareness of professional opportunities in the arts and, for some, this impacted their career, self-confidence and educational aspirations.

Outcomes shared during the last year of the partnership highlighted that:

  • 82% of the students interviewed about their experience of in-person activities linked their participation in the programme to an increased sense of self-confidence 
  • 73% of the students interviewed expressed an increased appreciation for the arts and for their local cultural organisations.
  • 82% of teachers felt that their careers guidance and advice improved as a result of their engagement in the programme

THE BURBERRY FOUNDATION 

Burberry donates a percentage of adjusted Group profit before tax to charitable initiatives each year. Independent of Burberry Group plc, the majority of our philanthropic work is carried out through The Burberry Foundation (UK registered charity number 1154468).

The Burberry Foundation was set up in 2008 by Burberry Group plc as an independent charity dedicated to using the power of creativity to drive positive change in our communities and build a more sustainable future. 

Following the completion of its recent long term partnerships, and building on its learnings and outcomes, in FY 2021/22, the Foundation underwent a strategic review of its future direction. Focusing all its resources on addressing the issue of left-behind youth, The Foundation’s new mission is  grounded on the belief that young people, regardless of their backgrounds, can create ideas, solutions, and connections for a better future. 

Concentrating all of its resources on addressing the issue of empowerment for left-behind youtha and expanding the Foundation’s activities to key operational geographies of Burberry Group Plc.

HUMAN RIGHTS STATEMENT

While we respect and uphold human rights where we operate, we are aware that risks can arise in relation to our own workforce, our supply chain, our communities and customers. 

 

Burberry’s Human Rights Policy sets out our procedures to uphold human rights across these stakeholder groups, and the mechanisms we use to identify and address any instances of potential infringement. The policy was developed with reference to the International Bill of Human Rights and follows the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights for the implementation of the UN’s “Protect, Respect and Remedy” framework. Responsibility for the policy lies with Burberry’s CEO. To ensure compliance with the policy, we assess human rights impacts and monitor labour conditions across our own operations and extended supply chain on a regular basis through our ethical trading programme, which is delivered by an established global team of ethical trading experts. 

 

Details of the programme and a full copy of our Human Rights Policy can be found here.

 

We conduct a Human Rights Impact Assessment every two years as part of our broader Human Rights due diligence process to confirm potential areas of risk, capture any emerging risks in relation to new operations and projects, and review and develop mitigation plans as required. We have completed four impact assessments since 2014 and our latest assessment took place within FY 2020/21. The Human Rights Impact Assessment process involves mapping our own operations and those of our extended supply chain, and assessing them in terms of their potential impact on human rights as set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 

 

For each assessment, key findings and mitigation plans were reviewed by external experts. In FY 2020/21, our Human Rights Impact Assessment highlighted increased risk with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in relation to workers’ health and wellbeing. In FY 2021/22, we continued to implement and build on our mitigating actions. In addition, we strengthened our approach to raw materials traceability mapping and assessment of risks. 

During ethical trade audits and as part of our broader Responsibility programme, we conduct interviews with workers to better understand their needs and perceptions, while gathering insights into the direct and indirect impacts of our business and developing focused mitigation plans where required. We also provide grievance mechanisms for our global employees, as well as confidential hotlines run by NGOs for workers in our supply chain. 

 

Currently, more than 19,000 workers across 36 factories in our third-party supply chain are provided with improved access to remedy and confidential support, including advice and information on workers’ rights and wellbeing. The effectiveness of these hotlines is regularly reviewed. During FY 2021/22, Burberry- sponsored hotlines received 435 calls and their resolutions were monitored closely by our Responsibility team. Supporting our human rights commitment is set out in our Modern Slavery Statement. This is published in line with the UK Modern Slavery Act and can be found on here.