Close symbol

Main Content

A key part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been how we support our communities. Throughout the pandemic, we engaged with local and national community partners to support their work, including through our existing charitable Foundations in Australia, the UK and Spain, and through our people volunteering their time and skills.

Australia

During 2021, the Bupa Foundation provided an additional AU$100,000 in emergency funding to our partner Kids Helpline in response to a surge in demand for mental health and counselling services for children and young people due to the impact of COVID-19 and extended lockdowns experienced across the country over 2021 We have also donated 2 billion COVID-19 vaccines through UNICEF’s Australia VaccinAid campaign.

Hong Kong

Our business in Hong Kong supported the public health sector with a health services offering during pandemic, which included pro-bono psychological virtual consultations and online mental health information sessions for low income and marginalised people. We also provided access to healthcare at a more affordable price at government run District Health Centres. We advocated for peer support and family conversations by creating a mental wellbeing card game with Chinese speaking youth and KELY Support Group. The educational game was made available to the community through free workshops for families and a digital version on our website. We also supported UNICEF’s Australia VaccinAid campaign.

Europe and Latin America

During 2021 ELA continued to support local communities and frontline healthcare professionals, during the pandemic; notably in Latin America where the pandemic continued for longer than in other countries, with donations to local NGOs in Brazil and programmes such as Bupa Contigo throughout Bupa Global and Latin America.

We expanded our successful Healthy Cities programme from Spain across our Europe and Latin America Market Unit, encouraging people to take up healthy lifestyle habits as the worst of Covid receded, and make the link between their health and the environment.  This saw Sanitas launch its 6th edition of Healthy Cities, which combined a sponsored challenge to walk 6,000 steps a day – every day for 6 weeks - and to leave the car at home one day a week. This in turn unlocked investment in urban regeneration projects, carried out with WWF and local city councils.  This virtuous cycle was extended, through the same digital platform, to LuxMed in Poland, where participants planted a total of 50 hectares of forest across Poland, with the country’s State Forest Authority – that’s over 375,000 trees!  This is an important part of us taking care of people’s health by also taking care of the health of the planet – thereby also raising awareness of the link between human and planet health.  Through actions that both encourage people to take care of their individual health, while also addressing air pollution, and working together to restore the health of the areas they live in we put the concept of ONE HEALTH into action.  Our steps can leave their mark on our future.

UK

The Bupa Foundation focuses on practical projects which support people’s mental wellbeing, particularly helping young people and those working in schools to thrive.

Our ‘Wellbeing for Educators’ programme supports educators to take care of their wellbeing. Since the programme launched in 2020, our volunteer coaches have delivered hundreds of free wellbeing sessions to over 4,700 school staff.

The Bupa Foundation also works in partnership with a number of other charities to support better mental wellbeing for young people. This includes national mental health charity, Mind, to help young people manage their mental health and the social mobility charity, Career Ready, supporting students to fulfil their potential through employability skills masterclasses, workplace visits and internships.

Across the UK, the Bupa Foundation has Community Committees – squads of Bupa employees who volunteer their time to support local organisations. For example, in 2021, the Dental Community Committee supported Dentaid, a charity who provide dental care for homeless and vulnerable people. By offering this pro-bono service, we donated £27,000 worth of dental care.

Bupa's Foundations

Australia and New Zealand

Since its inception in 2005, The Bupa Foundation has invested more than $36m over than 130 different health and care projects and organisations including Kids Helpline which remains a principal partner. Together they supported over 50,000 primary age children through the Wellbeing @ School early intervention programme delivered remotely in schools across Australia. The Foundation invested more than 4.06m in local communities including  new partnerships with UNICEF Australia to bring the UN Child Friendly Cities program to Australia, with Conservation Volunteers Australia to launch the ‘Health Planet Health People’  initiative, and with Project Crimson in New Zealand ‘Trees That count’ Programme to help plant thousands of native trees in New Zealand. These partnerships are focused on building mentally healthy and resilient communities and creating a healthy planet for healthy people. To find out more, please visit: https://www.bupa.com.au/about-us/bupa-health-foundation .

Spain

The Sanitas Foundation is committed to driving social change and equality, by combining the health benefits of sports for everyone in society. Its flagship project is Inclusive Sports, which promotes the practice of sports between people with and without disabilities. In October 2021, the Foundation staged the world’s first Inclusive Sports Games, together with the Spanish Olympic and Paralympic committees and the Higher Sport’s Council of Spain. Over 170 Spanish Olympic and Paralympic athletes competed together in different disciplines thanks to inclusive regulations. The Sanitas Foundation started promoting inclusion through sport 10 years ago; initially through a University Chair that introduced new regulations to facilitate Inclusive Physical Education classes at school and gradually working with Federations and Institutions to make Inclusive Sports a part of the National Sports Championships curriculum. This initiative was expanded to Chile in 2021 where the programme – called Inclusive Sports at School - supported 40,000 students in its first year.  To find out more, please visit: https://corporativo.sanitas.es/fundacion-sanitas .

UK

The Bupa Foundation supports community projects, the majority of which focus on improving mental health. In summer 2021 we supported the National Literacy Trust’s elephant story trail, which promoted the importance of literacy and the power of being in nature for wellbeing. We also supported the Single Homeless Project with their ‘Greenhouse Project’, which gave the opportunity for those suffering from homelessness in London the chance to experience gardening sessions, forest outings and camping trips to help boost their wellbeing. To find out more about our other community investments, please visit: www.bupafoundation.org .