Zurich Community Trust (ZCT) has donated more than £2 million to regional organisations around the UK in cities including Belfast, Birmingham, Croydon, Glasgow, Leeds, London and Manchester.
These charities have been selected by Zurich’s UK employees, with a focus on poverty, isolation, mental health, dementia, domestic abuse and homelessness. The partnerships will last for two years.
In addition, £900,000 has been awarded to three national partners over two years including Magic Breakfast which will feed more than 3,000 children and young people from disadvantaged areas of the UK.
ZCT is providing an additional £250,000 to support its national and local partners further with the current cost-of-living challenges.
All charity partners have been given access to ‘More than Money,’ a programme of non-financial assistance from ZCT including funded apprenticeships, employee and volunteer skills-based courses and webinars. They will also have access to Zurich’s Personal Development and Wellbeing Learning Hub.
Zurich has also integrated ‘MyImpact’ a charity donation platform, which allows employees to make regular or one-off donations to partner charities. Each donation will be 100% matched by the Z Zurich Foundation[i]. For every 10 hours of volunteering recorded on the platform in any calendar year, employees will receive £100 to donate to their favourite charity partner.
At the same time, the insurer has introduced a package of support for its 5000 UK employees. This includes financial education, webinars and access to bespoke consultations with eco-experts Planet First, to make their homes more energy efficient. Zurich will offer staff interest and tax-free loans of up to £10,000 to fund home improvements such as draft excluders, cavity wall or loft insulation, solar panels, or double glazing.
One-off payments of up to £1000, have been made to over 80% of staff, to help with the cost of living including rising utility bills, as well as access to emergency loans of up to £750 to cover unexpected expenses. Staff can also benefit from a range of discount schemes, plus advice and guidance on financial wellbeing and managing money.
Steve Collinson, Chief HR Officer at Zurich UK and Chair of Zurich Community Trust said: “Increases in the cost-of-living are affecting everyone, with inflation and high energy costs meaning budgets must now stretch further. Zurich Community Trust is proud that these donations will help to ease the burden for charities picked by our staff.
“At the same time, we are listening to our own people and offering flexibility and targeting support where it will have the most impact. This includes providing flexibility around benefits as well as guidance on how to manage finances.”