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Graduates Join Macmillan Future Leaders Innovation Challenge

30 November 2017
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Two Boots UK graduates were invited to join a programme of Macmillan Future Leaders to find new ways to engage young people in supporting the charity.

Alongside other young professionals from Macmillan’s corporate partners, such as Marks and Spencer and Nationwide, Kate Oliver, Supply Chain graduate and Jo Mawdsley, IT graduate, were set a challenge to use their skills and expertise to think of new ways to drive awareness, supporter engagement and fundraising to help support the 2.5 million people in the UK who are living with cancer.

The brief was: How can we engage fun-loving givers – a predominantly female demographic of young professionals aged 21-30 - to donate to Macmillan in small, but regular, ways that feel good?”

Kate said: “Research showed us that fun-loving givers like to support charities through work-based activities, getting involved with social media campaigns and events that are linked to their hobbies. With this in mind, we started to form ideas and group our thoughts into characteristics and insight statements, which we then used to create our fundraising product. This is the first year Boots has had the opportunity to take part in Future Leaders, so we were both really proud to represent the business and meet like-minded graduates from other organizations.”

The Future Leaders programme is a new way that Macmillan are approaching innovation for the charity, setting challenges for idea creation using human-centred design techniques to really understand the mind set of charity givers and find new ways to get them engaged.

Boots UK has been working in partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support since 2009 to ensure that everyone across the UK, personally or indirectly affected by cancer, can access the best cancer information and support in their local community.

At Boots, we want to have a positive impact on the lives of those affected by cancer by giving them what they need at the right time. Our partnership with Macmillan means we have been able to significantly increase the amount of cancer information and support we can give to our customers in accessible and trusted high street stores, in the community, as well as online.


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Boots is the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer with over 52,000 team members and around 1,900 stores, ranging from local community pharmacies to large destination health and beauty stores.*

Boots serves its customers and patients for life as the leading provider of healthcare on the high street and the UK’s number one beauty destination. It offers an unrivalled depth and breadth of products, which incorporates its extensive own brand range and innovative portfolio of brands, including No7, the UK’s No1 skincare brand, Soap & Glory, Liz Earle Beauty and Sleek MakeUP.

2024 marks Boots’ 175th anniversary year. Founder John Boot opened a herbalist store in Nottingham in 1849 to offer an affordable alternative to traditional medicines. His son Jesse expanded the business to become a modern retailer and the biggest chemist in Britain. Throughout its history, Boots has listened, learned and innovated, and it continues to challenge itself to improve its products and services every day.

Boots is part of Walgreens Boots Alliance, which is a global leader in pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing retail.  More company information is available on

*Figures accurate as of 31 May 2024