CO-OP stores around the country are supporting the Make Poverty History coalition by selling the white wristbands symbolising the high-profile campaign to end global poverty.
The Co-op is the only major retailer to be selling the bands, which have gone on sale in advance of the G8 Summit in Scotland when the leaders of the world's richest countries will be urged to deliver trade justice, debt cancellation and more and better aid for the world's poorest countries.
The wristbands are currently available in stores operated by the Co-operative Group, Midlands Co-op, OSG, Scotmid, Plymouth & SW Co-op, Chelmsford Star, Lothian & Borders, Ipswich & Norwich and West Midlands societies.
Meanwhile, the Co-operative Group has demonstrated its additional support for the coalition's campaign by wrapping its supermarket in the small Perthshire town of Auchterarder, close to the G8 Summit venue at Gleneagles, in a symbolic white band.
The Group will also have a major presence at the Summit rally in Edinburgh on July 2, where its exhibition 'Co-operating Out Of Poverty' (COOP) will highlight the contribution of co-operatives to the Fairtrade and Trade Justice movements.
In addition, it is providing £ 3,000 in sponsorship for the 7:84 Theatre Company's new play 'Tipping Point' which focuses on the G8 agenda. It will be performed at venues throughout Scotland including schools.
The Make Poverty History wristbands are £ 1 each and societies will pass on the full amount to the Make Poverty History coalition, which is made up of an alliance of over 460 charities, unions and faith groups, including Cafod, Christian Aid and Oxfam.
Stephen Youd-Thomas, head of social goals strategy at the Co-operative Group, commented: "Every week 200,000 people in the developing world die from preventable diseases due to extreme poverty, so as a co-operative business based on social and ethical values, we are determined to play our part in creating a fairer world and would urge our customers to show their support by buying a wristband."