Laying the groundwork for future growth
Collaboration and system-level change – the recipe for scaling up impact
© Aaron Clarke
Canada - Breaking down barriers to employment and changing the system by impacting conversation within the industry
Building on the foundations established in 2021 and 2022, we have renewed our collaboration with United Way Greater Toronto and Zurich Canada* to create social and economic equity for underrepresented youths in the Canadian insurance industry. This will allow them the opportunity to access entry-level roles in the industry with basic insurance knowledge and customer-centric skills sought out by the industry.
Over the next three years, the program aims to positively impact 600+ lives, including job opportunities for youth interested in pursuing a career in the insurance sector. It will also engage hundreds of volunteers. But one of the key achievements is the commitment from others to invest in this initiative. Marsh Canada, one of Zurich’s key broker partners, joined as a funding partner in 2023.
I’m very, very proud of the Zurich Insurance Pathways Program. We believe this program can stimulate the under-represented communities in our industry and serve as a role model for compassionate organizations to build up our communities.
The Zurich Insurance Pathways Program program has changed my life! As a new immigrant in Canada, I saw how difficult it was to want better for yourself but struggled to find those opportunities. This program not only helped me with my career development but also with my personal development.
Growing our portfolio and our impact
In 2022, we committed funding to 27 multi-year local grant programs. In addition to projects previously mentioned, other new grants are starting in 2023:
Growing the experience and impact of the team
In January 2022, Sofyen Khalfaoui joined the Z Zurich Foundation to lead the work under our improving mental wellbeing pillar. In November, we strengthened the Advocacy and Communications team with the arrival of Suzannah Richard. We also recruited Adriana Poglia to manage our social equity grant in Africa, starting in January 2023.
To address infrastructure and operational needs, we build on the knowledge and expertise of our management team with ongoing training and upskilling.
Learning from various stakeholders has enabled us to build capacity
In a rapidly evolving world, public and private organizations must respond to challenges with extraordinary, more comprehensive actions.
It requires a certain agility and simplification of some of the ways we work. It is an ongoing journey, which takes place at a structural level, but ultimately helps us better serve the vulnerable communities we support via the different aspects of our work.
How we addressed process, efficiency, and accuracy while keeping a sustainable approach in mind
Several years ago, we changed the name of our annual report to impact report. This is not just a matter of communication. Changing the name means placing greater emphasis on our critical focus on impact. In fact, how we measure impact has been an ongoing process to ensure the effective delivery of our strategy via our community programming and engagement activities.
This is only possible due to the development and implementation of a robust impact framework, which has enabled us to measure and report impact most accurately.
Digitalization also brings a whole new world of opportunities which we have embraced for our communications and governance areas by 1/implementing electronic signatures for our memorandum of understandings and other contractual pieces and 2/ launching a hybrid annual report with the majority of our content now available online instead of in print.
For the financial statements ended 31 December 2020, we moved to a full audit instead of a limited statutory examination.
The full audit audit also confirms our internal control framework. In addition, we have implemented a new accounting system in 2021, intended to improve our financial reporting further.
Approaching our 50th anniversary with confidence
Over the past 50 years, the Z Zurich Foundation has seen remarkable growth and impact. In 2023, we reach a significant milestone in our history - our 50th anniversary.
Half a century of creating positive change, strong collaborations with organizations spanning the globe, and the unwavering commitment from Zurich fills us with confidence for the future.
But there’s one simple answer to what makes us who we are as a Foundation – it’s the people. The people we work with who face challenging situations and need support. The people within our team who get up every day determined to make life better for others.
The people from public, private, and charitable organizations who work tirelessly alongside us. And the people from Zurich whose passion and dedication makes it possible for us to do what we do.
Our 50th anniversary is a milestone that presents an opportunity for us to mobilize further action and impact. When we reflect on our story, it reminds us of how much we can achieve when we work together towards a shared vision. Throughout 2023, our anniversary will not only be a celebration of achievements but will also serve as a catalyst to boost engagement and launch future initiatives.