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Community Support

Last Updated: 2024.02.09
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Fast Retailing supports the younger generation, who will become future leaders in society. We offer opportunities for education and social participation, helping empower children and youth.

Supporting Youth

One of the targets described in our Community Engagement Goals is to support children and youth. Our main activities in pursuit of this goal involve education and social participation. Fast Retailing employees serve as instructors in our school outreach program for children. Youth can participate in actual work experiences in our UNIQLO and GU stores. We also offer scholarship programs for university education.

The Power of Clothing Project teaches about refugee issues and the importance of clothing

In 2013, UNIQLO and GU in Japan launched The Power of Clothing Project. Under this project, UNIQLO and GU employees serve as instructors in our school outreach program for children. The children learn about clothing donations by UNIQLO and GU to refugee camps, using the opportunity to learn more about international refugees and internally displaced persons. The children learn about life among refugees and the role of clothing, and set up their own clothing drives. The children also view photo reports of clothing donations at refugee camps, learning about the important role and purpose of clothing.

【Steps in The Power of Clothing Project

  1. 1.School outreach conducted by UNIQLO and GU employees
  2. 2.Call for students and children in the community to collect clothing
  3. 3.Clothing collection and shipment
  4. 4.Report by UNIQLO and GU back to the students

In 2023, a total of 744 schools and 82,000 students across Japan participated in work experience programs. School children collected nearly 715,000 articles of clothing, a portion of which were delivered to refugee camps.

The Power of Clothing project received the Good Design Award in 2021 and the METI Minister's Award of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's Career Education Awards program in 2021(Japan). The program has since expanded to other countries and regions, including Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan in 2023.

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Workplace Experience

UNIQLO and GU stores in Japan sponsor work experience programs for elementary, junior high, and high school students. Students attending schools near our stores perform actual work done by UNIQLO and GU employees, learning the dignity of work and the enjoyment of being a contributing member of society. By experiencing service and teamwork that enhance customer satisfaction, students learn the value of work in the real world. Through these and other activities, participating UNIQLO and GU store managers and staff also learn valuable lessons.

In 2023, a total of 974 schools and 2,806 students across Japan participated in work experience programs.

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Scholarship for Vietnamese students

The Fast Retailing Foundation supports aspiring and ardent Vietnamese students who wish to study at Japanese universities, encouraging them to cultivate an understanding of the Japanese culture, harnessing and enhancing their gifts through intellectual exchanges as well as acquire the knowledge which they need in order to study in Japan.

The Foundation hopes that scholarship students with a sense of mission will make a significant contribution to the development and growth of societies in Vietnam, Japan, and the rest of the world, and we look forward to working together to make our societies better places for the generations to come.

Learn more about the scholarship program overview here.

Vietnamese students

Scholarship Program for Asian University for Women Students

In June 2013, Fast Retailing established a scholarship of US$1 million over five years for students at the Asian University for Women in Bangladesh. The Asian University for Women aims to become the leading educational institute for women in Asia. In Asia, many female students face financial challenges preventing them from attending university. Nearly 60% of the students at the Asian University for Women rely on scholarships. We believe in providing ambitious women opportunities to study at university and upon graduating, growing into professionals who make their mark on the global stage.

In 2014, Fast Retailing began offering a summer internship program for scholarship students studying at the Asian University for Women. Interns visit Fast Retailing headquarters in Tokyo to learn about business functions such as global management, marketing and ecommerce, as well as conduct market research.

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Creating Employment Opportunities

Fast Retailing aims to grow and prosper with the communities in which we operate. This includes the responsibility to hire from local communities, as well as seeking out opportunities to hire people with disabilities, refugees, and displaced persons.

The Fast Retailing Group Creates Employment Opportunities

The Fast Retailing Group contributes to creating local employment and economic development through its operation of stores and procurement activities. As of August 2023, Fast Retailing employs approximately 110,000 people around the world. Our partner factories are located in several countries including China, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Bangladesh and India, and our business with them fuels employment in those countries. In addition, we work with partner factories to help improve working conditions through our production offices located in the main production countries. In addition, as part of our efforts to promote diversity and inclusion, we are actively promoting the employment of people with disabilities and refugees.

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Stores Growing and Prospering with the Community

UNIQLO is a global business that respects the culture, history, and the environment of each community and neighborhood in which it operates. The company strives to build stores with strong local connections. UNIQLO also aims to contribute to economic development in the countries and regions where the company operates.

For example, UNIQLO has opened large-scale stores in Paris, Boston, Barcelona, and Stockholm that maintain the integrity of historical structures. In so doing, UNIQLO integrates with local culture and history, becoming a welcome member of the community.

UNIQLO strives to procure building materials from local sources as another means to contribute to the local economy. Of course, new UNIQLO stores also mean more opportunities for employment. UNIQLO aims to prosper with communities by working closely with and building stores that become important and fully integrated members of the community.

Respect for Local Culture: UNIQLO Passeig De Gracia (Spain)

UNIQLO Passeig De Gracia was the first UNIQLO location in Barcelona. The store was welcomed enthusiastically by the city thanks to efforts to integrate UNIQLO with Spanish culture. The stairwell from the ground floor to the third floor features a stained-glass window that was an existing part of the building. Combined with a traditional chandelier from the Catalunya region, this section has become a feature by which the store is recognized. The stairwell connecting the ground floor to the lower level features a design depicting daily life in Barcelona. Pre-opening events included collaborations with local food markets, a yoga event in the store, and other events that were well received by locals. Shopping bags used during the grand opening were printed with an original logo incorporating the Barcelona street tiles and the UNIQLO logo, representing the integration between UNIQLO and the Spanish culture.

Respect for Historical Architecture: UNIQLO Kungsträdgården (Sweden)

In August 2018, UNIQLO opened its first location in Sweden. UNIQLO Kungsträdgården opened in a historical building designed by the famous modern Swedish architect Sven Markelius in 1966. Located near the popular Kingstrad Park in Stockholm, UNIQLO designed the stairs between the park and the store to serve as a communal space for the local population.

UNIQLO procured 100 percent of the materials for the store renovation from local sources around Stockholm.

In addition, the building in which the store is located received Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. LEED is a system that evaluates the environmental functionality of building and site usage.

UNIQLO Kungsträdgården store

Global Activities Report

The Fast Retailing Group engages in initiatives wherever we do business around the world.

UNIQLO supports Street Soccer USA.

In the US, UNIQLO celebrated 10 years of partnership with Street Soccer last year, a non-profit organization that offers soccer-based life skills programs for youth living in poverty to experience the joy of sports.

UNIQLO is the official apparel sponsor of Street Soccer USA and has engaged with the organization in many ways to bring The Power of Clothing to the athletes and coaches, including hosting community shopping events, volunteering at games, tournaments, practices, and providing additional monetary and product donations over the years through special campaigns.

In 2023, during the Annual Times Square Cup in New York City, UNIQLO handed out the first "Teamwork Makes the Dream Work Award." This award was given to individuals who exemplify exceptional sportsmanship, guidance, and leadership to their team, fellow athletes, and coaches. In 2024, the partnership will continue and increase.

Street Soccer received the ESPN Sports Humanitarian Award (Corporate Community Impact) in July 2018.

Children Participating in Street Soccer USA

UNIQLO supports people with disabilities through Tailoring in Korea

In Korea, UNIQLO fosters inclusivity, supporting individuals with disabilities through local initiatives that positively impact society. One such initiative is a specialized clothing tailoring service known as the 'Clothes Reforming Service for People with Disability'.

Many individuals with disabilities encounter difficulties with standard garments, either due to ill-fitting sizes or the challenges of putting them on. The search for suitable ready-made clothing can be both challenging and costly for these members of the community.

In 2019, UNIQLO responded to these challenges, teaming up with the Korean Society for The Cerebral Palsied (KSF) to start the Clothes Reforming Service for People with Disability. This service provides a one-on-one customized tailoring service for UNIQLO clothing, taking into consideration each person's physical condition and personal preferences. The service includes a thorough consultation with specialist tailors and counsellors.

As of August 2023, around 3,400 people with disabilities have benefited from this service through approximately 15,000 modified clothing items. A survey in 2023 showed that 95% of users of the service felt their daily lives had been made easier, especially when dressing and undressing.

Theory: Be Heard. Program

Theory sponsors the women-empowering Be Heard. Program. Under this program, female customers have the opportunity to interact with female leaders, entrepreneurs, and other role models to catch the entrepreneurial spirit. This is one way in which Theory expands the potential for women in leadership roles.

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Support by the Fast Retailing Foundation

The Fast Retailing Foundation (FR Foundation) seeks to help build a society that encourages the harmonious co-existence of diverse peoples and facilitates sustainable development. We also seek to build a new future for the apparel industry. To achieve these aims, the FR Foundation focuses on promoting research designed to help make the world a better place, spurring technological development, nurturing human resources, and supporting socially vulnerable individuals or groups.

The Development of the Next Generation Support

  • Scholarship
  • Educational Exchange Program
  • Sports Next Generation Development

Self-Reliance Support

  • Refugee Support
  • Deafblind Children Support

Environmental Protection Support

  • Support for Tree-Planting Activities

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