At Unilever, we aim to double the size of our business while reducing our environmental footprint and increasing our positive social impact.
The Unilever Foundation is a key action we are taking to help meet our ambitious goal of helping more than 1 billion people improve their health and well-being and, in turn, create a sustainable future – a core commitment of the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan.
“We live in a rapidly changing world. One where populations are growing, water is becoming increasingly scarce, and where food security is a growing issue. Unilever is committed to addressing the unmet social needs that our business can play a unique role in helping to solve. This is especially true in developing and emerging markets where we have deep roots.” - Keith Weed, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer.
The Foundation is partnering with five leading global organisations – Oxfam, PSI (Population Services International), Save the Children, UNICEF and the World Food Programme. By working together, we will be able to expand the delivery of life-saving solutions and contribute to systemic and scalable social change.
These five global partners will also serve as our primary beneficiaries in times of disaster and emergency relief so that we are able to provide critical resources expeditiously when there is the greatest need and on longer-term projects to help rebuild communities.
Today we are facing significant complex challenges to our quality of life and that of future generations:
Nearly 800 million people do not have access to safe drinking water.
More than 2 million children under five years old die from diarrhoea and acute respiratory infections annually.
One child dies every four seconds from preventable and treatable causes because of a lack of basic healthcare.
An estimated 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation.
870 million people in the world do not have enough to eat.
The Unilever Foundation is taking a targeted approach to its social investments by focusing our support on these critical issues in order to create the type of change that is needed to improve the quality of people’s lives.
While we decided to concentrate our resources on five global partnerships, we recognise that individual countries also have social investment needs based on their unique circumstances. Therefore, the Unilever Foundation is supporting other partners in over 50 countries through direct funding, expertise, products and employee support to help address country-specific needs primarily aligned with the Foundation’s mission.
A sustainable future for generations
From its earliest days, Unilever has taken an interest in the social problems of the time and has tried to offer solutions – to the extent that this sense of social responsibility has become part of our DNA. Over the past decade alone, our social investments have benefited an estimated 50 million people every year.
Through the Unilever Foundation, we are investing in activities to tackle social issues in areas where we believe we can have the greatest impact. Many of our brands such as Domestos, Dove, Lifebuoy, Pureit and Wall's are also committed to investing in these critical social issues. As part of our company’s growth strategy, our brands invest in behaviour change programmes, consumer engagement campaigns and product benefits.
Investing resources in actions to tackle the many social issues of the 21st century will help us meet our goal of improving a billion better lives and help create a sustainable future for generations to come.