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COMPANY OF GOOD

Look good, feel good, do good

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Lush staff with volunteers from Home, a migrant rights organisation dedicated to assisting and upholding the rights of migrant workers in Singapore.

Singapore

COSMETICS retailer Lush - which sells products that range from fizzing bath bombs to shower jellies - is in the business of helping customers feel good and do good at the same time.

Sohana Chowdhury, director of Lush Singapore, said: "We love to see our shops getting involved in charitable giving and supporting small grassroots organisations."

Hence, its flagship community social responsibility programme, Charity Pot programme, was started in Singapore in 2014.

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The Charity Pot party is an extension of the Charity Pot programme. Representatives from the charities that Lush supports are invited to the party which is held in-store so staff and customers can find out more about the group, and the cause it supports, from the volunteers.

The Charity Pot hand and body lotion was created to raise money for the charities.

Proceeds - minus tax - go to helping selected grassroots groups such as Acres, a local animal welfare charity that advocates for the welfare, rights and protection of animals; Soap Cycling, a group that aims to improve sanitation and hygiene in underpriviledged regions; and Home, a migrant rights organisation dedicated to assisting and upholding the rights of migrant workers in Singapore.

"We believe we can make the most impact by funding causes that are often overlooked. We are looking for organisations that take on issues that others don't. Those that push the boundaries and challenge mainstream opinion. Hence, we prioritise funding to projects which aim to change opinion and behaviour through raising awareness of issue, activism, education and campaigning," said Ms Chowdhury.

She added that as a campaigning company, Lush looks for projects that create long-term change.

While Charity Pot is the main source of charitable giving at Lush, money is raised for specific charities and campaigning groups by selling limited edition campaign products designed to suit each cause.

Besides helping the society, Lush is also against animal testing.

"Animal testing for cosmetics was a problem for us - so we created our own non-animal-testing policy and ensure that all our suppliers adhere to this. We don't buy ingredients from companies that commission or conduct animal testing."

Lush also ensures that it tries to have the most positive environmental and social impact possible through its buying process.

"For example, we discovered that palm oil was a major factor contributing to rainforest destruction, so we decided to remove this from our supply chain, although it was a long process."

Cheryl Chong, manager at Lush at Wisma Atria, said: "Working at Lush makes you feel that you are part of something bigger . . . everyone in my team is really passionate about the brand and loves sharing the brand values with our customers. We use the shop floor as a platform to talk about our ethics and campaign on issues that are close to our heart."

  • This article is part of a series highlighting Champions of Good who mean business when it comes to corporate giving. Find out at www.companyofgood.sg if you have what it takes to be a Champion of Good. The Business Times supports NVPC's Company of Good programme as a media partner.
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