GRI: 103-1; 103-2; 103-3; 201-1a i & b; 203-2a; 207-1
UN SDGs: 2, 5, 8
S | Last Updated: July 7, 2021
As an omni-channel retailer with a physical presence in thousands of communities around the world, Walmart focuses on building thriving and resilient communities.
|Number of associates employed globally||>2.2 million||>2.2 million||>2.3 million|
|Corporate income-based taxes paid worldwide||>$3.9 billion||>$3.6 billion||>$5.2 billion|
|Global giving: Total cash and in-kind donations from Walmart and the Walmart Foundation||>$1.4 billion||>$1.4 billion||>$1.4 billion|
|Total global cash and in-kind donations from Walmart, Sam’s Club and the Walmart Foundation for disaster recovery and preparedness||>$11 million||>$3.5 million||>$50 million|
|Local cash giving from U.S. facilities52||>$42 million||>$65 million||>$43 million|
|Number of U.S. associates that participated in the|
Volunteerism Always Pays (VAP) program
|Number of volunteer hours U.S. associates|
reported through VAP program
|>776,500 hours||>630,000 hours||>278,000 hours|
|Number of pickup and delivery locations globally|
See all data and progress toward goals and commitments in our ESG Data Table.
Relevance to our business & society
Strong businesses help communities thrive; likewise, strengthening communities helps businesses thrive.
Sam Walton opened his first Walmart store nearly 60 years ago to serve the community of Rogers, Arkansas. Today, as an omni-channel retailer physically present in thousands of communities around the world, we serve millions of customers and employ over 2 million associates who live, work and play in these communities.
Our business success depends on meeting the expectations of our customers, associates and other stakeholders by contributing to communities in many ways, as described below.
Serving communities lies at the heart of Walmart’s mission to save people money and help them live better by providing convenient, omni-channel access to affordable food and other essential products and services day to day. We aim to create value for communities in many ways, including the following:
- Providing convenient access to affordable, quality food and other essential products through our omni-channel business model and everyday low prices
- Providing meaningful employment and helping develop the local workforce through quality jobs, training, education and career paths
- Investing in the local supplier base in markets where we operate to meet customer needs while helping to support supplier jobs and inclusive economic growth
- Contributing to community resilience through disaster response and enhancing food security
- Supporting local organizations and causes that matter to customers, associates and neighbors in our communities
- Contributing to the tax base through corporate income-based tax and the impact our business has in varying ways by community on other types of tax revenue (e.g., sales and property tax)
Key strategies & progress
We aim to serve communities by operating our business in a way that meets the needs of our customer and community stakeholder groups, complemented by additional efforts, including disaster support, associate volunteerism, local grant programs and community cohesion initiatives.
Providing access to affordable food, products & services
First and foremost, we aim to serve communities through our core mission of helping people save money and live better: providing customers with convenient, omni-channel access to affordable, quality food, apparel, household items and other products and services.
Convenient access to affordable products: In the U.S., our stores and/or clubs are within 10 miles of approximately 90% of American households, and our eCommerce capabilities allow us to reach many more. We have rolled out pickup at approximately 3,750 Walmart U.S. stores and all 597 Sam’s Clubs, and same-day delivery is offered in nearly 3,000 Walmart stores.
To help provide convenient access to affordable food to all our customers, regardless of income, we recently worked with the USDA and state agencies to allow customers to use SNAP benefits for pickup services (and we worked to scale this option in the first few months of the pandemic, when customers especially wanted low-contact shopping options). While SNAP benefits can be used chainwide in the U.S., they can now also be used for pickup and on Walmart.com, subject to restrictions in some states.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we have focused on sustaining community access to food and other essential products through store pickup, delivery and in-store options (with enhanced safety protocols for customers and associates) and on administering the distribution of vaccines. To learn more, see below and the COVID-19 U.S. Fact Sheet.
Pharmacy, health and wellness services: Walmart also provides pharmacy, optical services and in-store health kiosks in thousands of locations, with a focus on affordability (e.g., $4 prescriptions for generic medications with no insurance necessary) and convenience (e.g., transfers, mobile express pickup). Recent innovations include Walmart Health clinics, a partnership with healthcare providers focused on providing affordable options for primary care, labs, counseling, dental, optical, hearing and community health services, and Walmart Insurance Services, a licensed insurance brokerage service.
Financial services: Consistent with our mission to help people save money and live better, we announced the formation of a new fintech startup, intended to develop and offer innovative and affordable financial solutions. The offer will build on Walmart’s flat, low-fee money transfer services, which have saved customers over $1.5 billion in estimated fees since launching in 2014.
Read more: Safer, healthier food & other products.
Providing access to essential products and services during COVID-19
Walmart pivoted our business to support communities with essential products and services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Statements below are for initiatives in the U.S. unless otherwise stated.
Vaccine outreach and education
In addition, the Walmart Foundation is supporting organizations through grants totaling $2.75 million to increase education, outreach and awareness of COVID-19 vaccines among diverse communities, including: NAACP Empowerment Programs, Inc., UnidosUS, Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health, Association of Asian-Pacific Community Health Organizations, the National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physicians, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Interfaith Youth Core and The Conference of National Black Churches.
Read more: COVID-19 Fact Sheet.
Providing quality jobs, training & career paths
We believe retail can be a springboard for economic opportunity. By providing quality jobs, training and career paths, we aim to meet our customers' rising expectations while retaining great talent and contributing to local employment and workforce development. We employ more than 2 million associates in thousands of communities around the globe, offering a variety of career opportunities. We offer low barriers to entry, competitive wages, benefits, on-the-job coaching and training, and for eligible associates in the U.S., the opportunity to participate in a program designed for adult working learners to graduate debt-free through Live Better U. Read more: Human capital: good jobs and advancement for associates.
Job opportunities during COVID-19
Communities struggled when government orders forced businesses to close in March 2020. As an essential business, Walmart was in a position to help affected individuals bridge the gap. In March 2020, Walmart announced plans to hire 150,000 hourly associates in the U.S. to help people who had been displaced from their jobs due to the impact of COVID-19 and to help with increased customer demand.
We expanded our hiring goal to 200,000 and met it in less than a month. Within six months, we hired more than 500,000 new associates. To accomplish this additional hiring in a short time, we expedited our hiring process, which allows applicants to go from application to offer in as quickly as 24 hours.
Read more: COVID-19 Fact Sheet.
Investing in the local supplier base
Through sourcing and investing in our suppliers, Walmart aims not only to serve our customers well but also to help support jobs and inclusive economic growth in markets where we operate. Some examples include:
Made in the U.S.A.
Walmart has a long history of supporting American products. According to data from our suppliers, about two-thirds of what Walmart U.S. spends on products is attributable to items made, grown or assembled in communities across the U.S. Through our America at Work initiative, we committed to invest an incremental $250 billion in products that support the creation of American jobs between 2013 and 2023. As of the end of FY2021, we have purchased $145 billion towards our initiative, achieving 93% of our expected progress through the first eight years of the initiative. In March 2021, we announced a refreshed ten-year commitment to invest $350 billion in products made, grown or assembled in America. This investment has the potential to support more than 750,000 new American jobs53 and avoid more than an estimated 100 million metric tons of emissions.54
Supporting India manufacturing and entrepreneurs
Walmart serves millions of customers and employs thousands of associates in communities across India through our Flipkart, PhonePe, and Best Price businesses. In support of communities across India and the country’s rise as a global hub of manufacturing, Walmart announced in December 2020 that we will seek to triple our exports of goods from India to $10 billion each year by 2027. The new export commitment is expected to provide a significant boost to micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises in communities across the country alongside our ongoing supplier development programs such as Flipkart Samarth and Walmart Vriddhi.
Strengthening small producers
Walmart works with many small and medium enterprises in Mexico and Central America. We also lead supplier development programs focused on small and medium enterprises in the region, including Adopta una PyME (Adopt a SME), Una Mano para Crecer (A Helping Hand), and Tierra Fértil (Fertile Soil).
Since 2017, the Walmart Foundation has awarded grants of over $52 million to benefit smallholder farmers in India, Mexico and Central America. These grants are expected to reach over 293,000 smallholder farmers, 44% of whom are women, and provide access to training and capacity development along with market linkages for smallholders in Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs). A major part of the program focuses on India, where the Walmart Foundation has an active $25 million, five-year commitment to strengthen smallholders in FPOs.
Learn more: People in supply chains.
Contributing to community resilience: disaster response & food security
In many communities, Walmart is a source of support during difficult times. Our experience with Hurricane Katrina in 2005 helped us realize how we could draw on our strengths to support community resilience in the face of natural disasters and other significant challenges such as food insecurity and, as we have experienced recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve worked to identify emerging risks and help communities, our stores, our associates and our customers prepare for and respond to disasters as well as health and social challenges.
Natural disaster response
In FY2017, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation pledged $25 million in cash and in-kind donations to support disaster preparedness and relief through 2020. Since 2016, Walmart, Sam’s Club and the Walmart Foundation have provided more than $108 million for disaster preparedness, response and relief efforts supporting communities around the globe.
In 2020, our Emergency Operations Center, stores, clubs, DCs, and Walmart.org team worked to help communities respond to disasters ranging from wildfires and earthquakes to hurricanes and tornadoes. Support included:
- Walmart and the Walmart Foundation committed up to $1 million in cash and in-kind product donations to support relief efforts to help feed and shelter those affected by wildfires in California, Oregon and Washington.
- When Central America fell victim to Hurricanes Iota and Eta in late 2020, our stores in the region engaged with emergency efforts and supported organizations that helped those affected by the storms. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation responded with a commitment of up to $1 million through the Walmart Foundation Disaster Relief Fund at Charities Aid Foundation of America. The Fund supported organizations including the International Federation of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent Societies.
- In one of the most active hurricane seasons on record, Walmart, Sam’s Club and the Walmart Foundation committed up to $2.5 million in cash and in-kind product donations to organizations leading response and recovery efforts in southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas after Hurricane Laura. In addition, Walmart and Sam’s Club provided phone charging stations in the Lake Charles area and hosted food relief organizations handing out hot meals in our parking lots.
We also support initiatives to build the capacity of communities to respond when disaster strikes. For example, in 2019, the Walmart Foundation invested $2 million in the American Red Cross’ development of the Red Cross Visual Event Wizard (RC View), a geospatial tool that aggregates and shares critical real-time data for situation awareness across organizations to enable a faster, more coordinated and more efficient response.
Read more: Disaster preparedness & response.
For more than a decade, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have prioritized enhancing food security in U.S. communities through initiatives that we now call Healthier Food for All; in the past few years we have expanded efforts to other Walmart markets such as Canada and Mexico.
Our efforts to enhance food security focus on facilitating access to nutritious food and building confidence to prepare and serve healthier meals:
- Food donations. In FY2021, Walmart stores, clubs and distribution centers in the U.S. donated more than 627 million pounds of food55, 66% of which were fruits, vegetables, dairy products and meats. These donations help to improve food security for those in need and strengthen the charitable meal system – the network of food banks, food pantries and meal programs across the U.S.
- Strengthening the charitable meal system. For years, we have worked with many organizations across the U.S. to strengthen the capacity of the charitable meal system to recover and distribute food, particularly fresh food, to those who need it. One of our longest-standing relationships to help strengthen access to food in communities is with Feeding America. In 2020 alone, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation contributed more than $13 million in grants to support Feeding America, a nationwide network of 200 food banks in the U.S.
- Reaching underserved populations. The Walmart Foundation supports efforts to unlock resources for community-based organizations and entrepreneurs in geographic areas with limited access to food, oftentimes characterized as food deserts and/or swamps, focusing on removing barriers to funding for Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)-led organizations. Read more: Equity & inclusion at Walmart & beyond.
- Encouraging healthier choices. Walmart’s everyday low-price proposition includes a focus on providing affordable, healthier food options through stores, clubs, grocery pickup and home delivery channels. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation also provide philanthropic support to programs that help build people’s confidence in selecting, preparing and serving healthier meals. Since FY2015, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have funded nutrition education programs reaching 4 million people, a milestone achieved in 2019. Building on this milestone, in FY2021 alone, the Walmart Foundation provided additional funding to reach over 500,000 people with nutrition education. For example, the Walmart Foundation has supported Feeding America, Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry, Brighter Bites and National 4-H Council —organizations that work to improve food security in communities and bolster programs that teach children and their families how to make healthier choices. The 4-H Healthy Habits program has shown that when children and families learn about healthy eating, they increase their healthy eating habits and adopt other healthy behaviors like drinking more water and physical activity. Brighter Bites’ programming engages kids and families in schools across the country increasing access to fresh fruits and vegetables combined with nutrition education to prevent obesity and improve health outcomes.
- Engaging customers. Since 2014, Walmart and Feeding America have led an annual Fight Hunger. Spark Change. campaign to bring greater awareness to the fight against hunger in the U.S. To date, Walmart, Sam’s Club, participating suppliers and customers have cumulatively raised $119 million for Feeding America and its network of local food banks.
- Sharing best practices. In FY2021, the Walmart Foundation provided a grant to help found the Healthy Food Community of Practice, involving more than 35 organizations focused on healthier food access and consumption.
COVID-19 philanthropic response
To help communities respond to COVID-19, Walmart has focused on the safety of our associates and customers, providing access to essential products and services through our omni-channel business, administering COVID-19 vaccines and testing (as feasible based on local community conditions and regulations), and providing employment at a time when many were seeking it. Read more: COVID-19 Factsheet and Human capital: Good jobs & advancement for associates.
We also brought our philanthropy to bear. In FY2021, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation gave more than $43 million in cash and in-kind donations to support COVID-19 response efforts around the world related to health care, technology and food access. We announced in April 2021 that to help India meet its urgent need for medical-grade oxygen, Walmart businesses worldwide are working together to procure vital oxygen concentrators and other equipment. Extending these efforts, the Walmart Foundation committed up to $2 million to support various NGOs in India. Read more about the organizations that received funds as part of our response to the pandemic here and here.
According to Feeding America, the largest food relief organization in the U.S., COVID-19 reversed progress the U.S. had been making on food insecurity pre-pandemic, putting an estimated one in eight people at risk of hunger by the end of 2020, and demand at food banks increased by 55%. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation, long-standing supporters of Feeding America, contributed over $13 million to the organization in 2020 alone. Walmart U.S. stores, clubs and distribution centers also donated unsold food and other surplus items toward hunger-relief organizations.
Our philanthropic response to COVID-19 included helping charitable partners adapt to the challenges of physical distancing. For example, during the 2020 Christmas holiday season, Walmart and the Salvation Army worked together to add virtual giving options to two iconic giving programs – the Red Kettle and Angel Tree campaigns (an option to “round up” purchases to the nearest dollar at check out for local Salvation Army chapters; virtual Angel Trees on Walmart.com).
Collaborating to strengthen communities
We collaborate with others to strengthen the communities we call home, including providing business and philanthropic resources to advance causes that our customers, associates, and other community members care about. In FY2021, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation provided over $1.2 billion in cash and in-kind donations for a wide range of community causes across the U.S.
Walmart RISE: local giving & empowerment
Through Walmart RISE (Respect, Integrity, Service, Excellence) in the U.S., we seek to empower associates and customers locally to connect with non-profits and support them in a range of ways such as: Walmart store/club/DC grants and in-kind donations; non-profit charitable gift registries on Walmart.com; matching funds for associate volunteerism and giving; fundraising campaigns in our stores and eCommerce; matching grants from Walmart or the Walmart Foundation; and by providing Walmart space such as store entrances for use by non-profits.
Facility grants: stores, clubs, fulfillment centers, distribution centers
Our local community grants, totaling $43 million in FY2021, are awarded through an open application process and provide funding directly from Walmart and Sam’s Club facilities to local organizations in the U.S.56 Local community grants range from a minimum of $250 to a maximum of $5,000. Eligible nonprofit organizations must operate on the local level (or be an affiliate/chapter of a larger organization that operates locally) and directly benefit the service area of the facility from which they are requesting funding. Facilities also make in-kind donations. As examples, local efforts included donating truckloads of supplies to hospitals, donating tablets to a senior living facility to allow family communication during quarantine and providing Chromebooks to schools to support distance learning.
Associate volunteerism & giving
Our associates are passionate about many causes, and we support them by donating to nonprofits in honor of their service through Volunteerism Always Pays (VAP). In FY2021, more than 12,000 U.S. associates volunteered 278,000 hours through the program, generating more than $2 million in Walmart donations. In May 2020, we hosted the “May Month of Giving,” where we matched associate donations to nonprofits two to one. In January 2021, on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Walmart matched associate donations three to one and customer donations two to one, up to the applicable limits, resulting in Walmart associates and customers raising more than $8 million for a variety of causes.
Registry for Good
Registry for Good launched in November 2019, and just like a wedding or baby registry, verified nonprofits began creating personalized lists of needed products, including gift cards, and shared these lists with their donors. Walmart ships items purchased through a nonprofit’s registry directly to the nonprofit – reducing friction caused from setting up collection sites and retrieving donations. When COVID-19 hit, Registry for Good became a valuable tool for many organizations that were forced to pivot their normal collection drives online.
In the wake of COVID-19, we launched a simple, easy and safer way for customers to give back to organizations in their communities. We began offering Walmart.com shoppers the chance to round up their purchases to the nearest dollar and have their donation go to a specified charity. Since launching the program in May 2020, our customers have helped generate more than $14 million for various nonprofits around the country.
Using our space for good
Prior to the pandemic, Walmart stores provided space outside our stores for charitable organizations like the Girls Scouts of America and local school booster clubs. With that offering temporarily on hold in 2020 for the safety of our customers and associates, we saw an opportunity to adjust this policy to help the Salvation Army continue their annual Red Kettle campaign while keeping customers safe during the holidays. The Salvation Army Red Kettles were stationed at a safe distance in front of our stores, and we also added the campaign to our round-up platform during the 2020 holiday season. Customers who shopped at Walmart.com and in the Walmart app were able to round up their total bill to the nearest dollar and donate the added amount to the Salvation Army. Customers could also safely donate toys and clothes to the Angel Tree program at donation bins in stores and clubs or online. Walmart and Sam’s Club customers donated more than $45 million in cash and in-kind gifts, serving over 1 million kids and families.
Building equitable, welcoming, engaged communities
Walmart and Walmart Foundation focus on building more equitable, welcoming and engaged communities through our customer mission as well as our shared value initiatives covered elsewhere such as Safer, healthier food & other products; Disaster preparedness & response; Human capital: good jobs and advancement for associates; Product supply chains: sustainability overview; and Equity & inclusion at Walmart & beyond. Please see the relevant briefs to learn more about each of these efforts.
Recent examples of efforts related to building more equitable, welcoming and engaged communities through our philanthropy include:
- Center for Racial Equity. In June 2020, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation committed $100 million over five years to create our Center for Racial Equity with a special focus on eradicating systemic disparities experienced by Black and African American communities in the U.S. in our nation’s health, education/workforce, criminal justice and financial systems. In February 2021, we announced the first $14.3 million of the $100 million commitment to 16 nonprofit organizations. Read more: Equity & inclusion at Walmart & beyond.
- Investment in Chicago. After local protests in spring 2020 in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, Walmart temporarily closed damaged stores to protect our associates and customers. As the city struggled with additional closures, Mayor Lightfoot said it would take a Herculean effort for businesses to open back up. Responding, Walmart committed to reopening our stores, transforming the offerings in these stores to better support the community’s needs, and work with community leaders to advance racial equity, including addressing disparities in health outcomes faced by Black and African American communities. In November 2020, we announced the grand reopening of two remodeled supercenters with added Walmart Health clinics providing state-of-the-art, affordable health care services. Walmart is working with local vendors and contractors. Additionally, Walmart contributed grant dollars to local community organizations. Read more: Equity & inclusion at Walmart & beyond.
- Belonging Begins with US. To help foster cohesion within U.S. communities, in 2020, Walmart along with the Ad Council helped launch the Belonging Begins with US campaign dedicated to fostering a more welcoming nation that fully includes those not born in the U.S. We donated media inventory on Walmart.com and ad space on our in-store TV walls to drive awareness of the campaign.
- Civic engagement: voting and the census. Also in 2020, in the U.S. we provided resources to our customers and associates to ensure they had the information needed to participate in local, state and federal elections, and we partnered with the U.S. Census to drive engagement and help communities better understand the advantages of participating in the 2020 Census. On top of any state requirements, Walmart provided associates with up to three hours of paid voting time so they could cast their vote if their work schedules did not provide at least three consecutive hours of off-duty time while the polls were open.
Northwest Arkansas/home office giving
Walmart has headquarter facilities around that world that support our eCommerce and store operations in 24 countries.57 We prioritize engaging through our associates and other resources to help our headquarter communities thrive. In FY2021, our home office in northwest Arkansas and our eCommerce offices in San Bruno, California, and Hoboken, New Jersey, provided more than $15 million in community grants to local organizations.
In Northwest Arkansas, which Walmart has called home since 1962, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation continue to invest in:
- Supporting economic opportunity through programs that strengthen long-term capacity and address gaps and barriers in regional coordination and the workforce of the future
- Improving access and availability to healthier food for underserved communities including programs that help in building nutrition literacy and skills
- Strengthening community cohesion through programs that build a culture of inclusion and provide affordable access to high-quality arts and recreation programs. To learn more about these efforts, see our Local Community Support site.
Contributing to tax revenue
Walmart contributes significantly to the tax base in the countries in which it operates and in thousands of communities around the world.
- Over the last three years, Walmart has paid more than $12.7 billion in corporate income-based taxes worldwide. Our effective corporate tax rate was 33.3% for FY2021.
- In addition to income taxes, Walmart’s property and business activities are directly taxed via property and other means of taxation at the state, provincial and local levels. These tax dollars provide revenue to fund services, projects and programs like fire, police, schools, libraries and community health services.
- As a retailer, Walmart reduces the administrative burden on national, state, provincial, and local governments by collecting sales and value-added taxes on their behalf in compliance with relevant laws and regulations. In the U.S., we publish the amount of sales taxes we collect and remit in all 50 U.S. states through our location facts at Corporate.Walmart.com/our story/our locations.
- And as an employer, Walmart compensates over 2 million associates at its stores, clubs, warehouses and offices worldwide. These jobs enable our associates to participate in the economic life of their communities and in most jurisdictions also generate tax revenue through income and social insurance taxes.
- The primary way we serve communities is by operating our business; our success in serving communities is therefore dependent on the strength of our business and the success of our performance on other key ESG issues, including providing good jobs and advancement opportunity for associates; providing access to safer, healthier, and more affordable food and other essential products and services; and providing opportunity for suppliers, sellers, and local economies.
- Stakeholders and communities have more needs than Walmart can possibly meet alone, creating the need to focus on our core capabilities and collaborate to extend impact.
- Successfully serving communities is dependent on engagement of associates, suppliers, and customers. Associates serve our customers, suppliers produce and distribute products, and customers participate in and contribute to causes that are important to them.
- Social and environmental challenges--including natural disasters and unrest--may increase, straining resources. Additionally, economic shifts can create sudden and widespread community needs, including for employment and essential items.
- National and global catastrophic events, including pandemics, can exacerbate many of the above factors.
- Walmart location facts
- Local community support site
- COVID-19 Fact Sheet
- Walmart.org’s response to COVID-19
- Walmart.org’s COVID-19 local community grant recipient list
- COVID-19 testing page
- Center for Racial Equity
- America at Work initiative
- Community Academy
- Culture, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (CDEI) 2020 Report
- Equity & inclusion at Walmart & beyond
- Disaster preparedness and response
- Safer, healthier food & other products
- Product supply chains: Sustainability overview