The extraordinary events of the last two years have fundamentally changed us all – from the way in which we live and work, through to our perceptions about what truly matters to us. They have also underscored the immense responsibility that businesses and brands have to step up, do more and do better – for the people and communities they serve, and the planet we call home.
At P&G, doing good is in our DNA. This is brought to life through our Citizenship platform, which is comprised of three pillars – Community Impact, Equality & Inclusion (E&I) and Environmental Sustainability – all of which are underpinned by a strong focus on Ethics & Corporate Responsibility; that means doing the right thing and being a good corporate citizen. This platform is at the heart of absolutely everything we do – from building trust and equity with the people we serve around the world, to driving growth and creating value. In essence, it is the foundation upon which we’re able to be a force for good and a force for growth within the countries and communities in which we operate.
We built upon this in December 2020 when we launched #LeadWithLove – a commitment to undertake 2,021 Acts of Good throughout 2021. Whilst the pandemic continued to cause immense uncertainty in the 12 months that followed, we are hugely proud of how our company, brands, sites and people came together to achieve great things. Below is just a snapshot of what we’ve been up to…
#LeadWithLove for communities
Earlier this year, we were delighted to celebrate the 20th anniversary of our partnership with product redistribution charity In Kind Direct. The organisation has helped to provide the Comforts of Home to millions of people across the UK through more than 7,500 charitable organisations, with almost £50 million worth of products donated.
In November, to recognise World Prematurity Day, Pampers partnered with Bliss – the UK’s leading charity for babies born premature or sick – to provide tailored support to those in need. November also marked the tenth year of Gillette’s partnership with Movember, which seeks to change the face of men’s health. And throughout 2021, we made additional donations to a range of valued charity partners, including the British Red Cross, Mermaids and Macmillan.
#LeadWithLove for equality
In June, we launched our Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 campaign, Breaking Down Barriers. It sought to remove the barriers that prevent people from getting involved in sports, whilst dispelling the stereotypes that surround the ‘type’ of person who is considered good at them. During the Paralympic Games, Always teamed up with Stef Reid as part of its mission to #KeepHerPlaying, following research which found that one in three girls drop out of sport at puberty. And brands including Oral-B and Gillette featured in a special ad takeover during the Paralympics Opening Ceremony. Led by Channel 4 and the RNIB (Royal National Institute for the Blind), the takeover sought to raise awareness of the importance of audio description in advertising.
Across October, we accelerated our commitment to fighting for racial equality through our Black History Month celebrations, during which we heard from Black and Mixed Heritage colleagues, as well as allies, on what Black history means to them. As part of this, we welcomed Gillette Ambassador, Ian Wright, and the Football Beyond Boarders charity to our head office. During the session, we heard about Game Changers – a powerful, anti-racism programme that is helping to provide the next generation with a richer, more authentic insight into Black British history.
As part of our Social Mobility E&I sub-pillar, we worked with organisations including The Elephant Group, HeadStart, The 93% Club, The Bright Network, SEO London and more throughout 2021 to offer support, inspiration, coaching and development opportunities to ensure those from less advantaged backgrounds have an equal chance to shine. As part of this, we were delighted to welcome three apprentices to P&G, who will ‘earn whilst they learn’, providing on-the-job experience, combined with higher education to achieve a degree equivalent qualification.
Our beauty brands are also continuing to drive for a more equal world. In February, Pantene launched its ‘My Hair Won’t Be Silenced’ campaign, which seeks to end discrimination against Afro hair in the UK, and in October, the brand announced that hair and beauty-loving BBC broadcaster, TikTokker and disability activist, Lucy Edwards, who is herself blind, would join Pantene as its latest ambassador. Meanwhile, Olay partnered with The Dr Ateh Jewel Education Foundation to drive for greater diversity and representation within STEM by funding students from Black and Mixed Heritage backgrounds to became cosmetic scientists.
#LeadWithLove for the planet
In 2021, we accelerated our ambition to achieve net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across our operations and supply chain, from raw material to retailer, by 2040. We also set interim 2030 goals to ensure we continue to make meaningful progress throughout the next decade.
Our brands also continued their journey. For example, Ariel launched its Wash Cold Challenge in order to encourage us all to reduce the carbon footprint of our laundry. Meanwhile, P&G Beauty unveiled its latest packaging innovation in Europe across brands including Head & Shoulders, Pantene, Herbal Essences and Aussie. As part of the initiative, new, reusable, 100% aluminium bottles and refill pouches were launched in order to reduce the use of virgin plastic. And Gillette embarked upon its most significant product and packaging upgrade in the UK and Ireland across premium refillable razors. This included a technology upgrade its blades, redesigned, sleek modern handles and the transition to fully recyclable cardboard packaging made with recycled content and responsibly sourced paper, certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
As we reflect on the year that has passed, we are hugely proud of all we have achieved. Whilst we remember the hardships that we have faced, we will also remember the moving moments of human kindness that we’ve seen as we’ve come together to support one another. And that is why, as we enter 2022, our commitment to #LeadWithLove has not wavered. As we embark upon a new year, we’ll continue to use our resources, scale and voice to drive action and positive change. From continuing our journey to create a more equal world, to preserving the planet we call home, and providing invaluable support to those in need. That’s because we believe even small actions can make the world a better place – but we can’t do it alone. So join us, and let’s do more Acts of Good.