sainsbury's staff

Sainsbury’s hoped the initiative would help instil a stronger sense of connection in communities

Sainsbury’s is offering its 178,000 colleagues the opportunity to spend a day volunteering.

The move comes as findings from the retailer, the National Centre for Social Research and Oxford Economics show that the nation’s sense of wellbeing and perceived quality of life has declined in the past year.

According to its fourth Living Well Index, which quizzed 8,000 people on everything from their sex lives to sleep quality, finances, relationships and jobs, nearly half (47%) socialised with friends and family once a month or less - and 10% of people claimed they always ate alone.

The average wellbeing score for the average person dropped to 60.4 out of 100 - 0.38 lower than last year - which was associated with a reduction in disposable income of £260 a month, or an 18% drop for the average household.

Sainsbury’s said the research pointed to a need to instil a stronger sense of connection in communities.

“Our ambition is to help our customers to live well for less - it’s been at the heart of the company since we began 150 years ago,” said Sainsbury’s retail and operations director Simon Roberts.

“To help bring back a sense of community for our customers and colleagues, we have launched our 150 Days of Community initiative, which enables all of our colleagues to spend a day volunteering and help support local causes.”