Impact Report 2023

50 years of creating Impact

Photo caption: Haluwa and two other women from her community carry recently harvested maize from their communal farm in Makere village in Kenya’s Tana River County. Photo credit: Lisa Murray/Kerry Group/Concern Worldwide

On this webpage, you will find more information about the impact we had in 2023! We invite you to navigate through the pages and different tabs to discover why 2023 was such an unprecedented year. Our online annual report content can be downloaded below, alongside our 2023 financial statements.

It’s the people who matter most

Message from Gary Shaughnessy, Chair of the Z Zurich Foundation

In a world facing extraordinary challenges, it can be hard not to lose hope.

The past year has certainly been a trying time for people and communities across the globe. Increasing climate volatility, worsening mental health worldwide, along with deteriorating inclusion and tolerance and the surge in people affected by humanitarian crisis casts a grim backdrop.

Nevertheless, the decisions and actions we take today can create brighter, more hopeful futures for those in greatest need and make a difference that is even more meaningful and necessary.

In 2023 we recognized Z Zurich Foundation’s (the Foundation’s) 50th anniversary. The impact we now have on millions of people across the world reflects the commitment and leadership of many inspirational individuals throughout our history. Our people and our partners have refused to be daunted by the many challenges of the past half century, finding solutions and sharing them to make them relevant to different countries, cultures and communities.

For 50 years, our work has always been about people. Behind the impact numbers are individual stories of resilience and hope. These stories inspire and remind us of our power to make a difference, one life at a time.

Last year also marked the 10-year milestone for the Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance, using the partners’ different skills and experiences to support communities in being resilient and more independent. Increasingly we are engaging with governments who recognize the value of this work and we are extending this successful model from flood to heat waves and wildfires.

A highlight for me last year was when the Foundation recognized and celebrated the exceptional efforts of 50 Zurich Insurance Group (Zurich) employees worldwide, honoring them as Community Heroes for their outstanding activism. Their energy, compassion and commitment to helping others have transformed communities across the globe.

In 2023 we intensified our efforts to scale solutions and bring about systemic, transformative change that goes beyond funding and can last a lifetime. Our world remains a source of wonder, with new technologies allowing us to connect more easily and open up life-changing opportunities. But it is also vulnerable, reflecting the power of nature, the uncertainty we face, and the difference in opportunities based on where we were born, our gender or our background.

However, thanks to the insights and actions of so many partners and our people, we now also have the capacity to make an even more profound impact.

As we have grown , so has our opportunity to help more, to influence more and to share more.

As ever, we are incredibly grateful to Zurich, its employees, and the charitable organizations that we work with. Together, we can help build a future with increased resilience and earlier action to create greater independence and opportunity across all of society.

Thank you for your help, drive and commitment at a time when both our impact and the need have never been greater.

Gary Shaughnessy

2023: a record year of impact on all fronts

5.9 million lives at least positively impacted via our programming activities in 2023 and 15.6 million *


Responding Crisis   

* Positively impacted & transformed numbers from our grant programs during our last strategic cycle (2020-2023) For each of our pillars, we have defined specific impact personas to clarify our definitions of “positively impacted” and “transformed.” In a summary way:

  • A person has been “positively impacted” if we observe some substantive improvement in their lives as a result of the activity
  • A person is “transformed” if we observe an enduring change in their circumstances as a result of the intervention

** Zurich Insurance Group Ltd and its subsidiaries (Zurich). Excluded are employees of the Farmers Exchanges and Cover-More. Zurich Insurance Group has no ownership interest in the Farmers Exchanges.

Farmers Group, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Zurich Insurance Group, provides certain non-claims services and ancillary services to the Farmers Exchanges as attorney-in-fact and receives fees for its services.

50th anniversary

Our 50-year anniversary​

In just a few decades, we have shifted from a local charity into a globally recognized organization, transforming the lives of
millions of people along the way.

We cannot overstate the impact that our team, charitable organizations we work with, and Zurich’s people and global network have had on the first 50 years of our story, and we are extremely grateful.

Our anniversary presented an opportunity for us to mobilize further action and impact. As we reflected on our story, it reminded us of how much we can achieve when we work together towards a shared vision. Throughout 2023, our anniversary was not only a celebration of achievements – it also served as a catalyst to boost engagement and launch the next chapter of our history.

Wondering how we got here?

Let's go all the way back to 1973...

Insights from our Board of Trustees​

Transparency and continuous improvement are paramount in effectively allocating the Foundation’s resources. Over the years, we have significantly expanded our impact, both in scope and magnitude.

Through their dedicated efforts, our Board of Trustees have been instrumental in supporting this progress. The members of our Board play a vital role in ensuring the smooth execution of our operations and the realization of our mission.

Additionally, their wealth of professional experience and guidance greatly benefits our Management Team.

On this note, we would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to Jack Howell, Kathleen Savio, and Sylvia Martinez for their unwavering support over the years. Their commitment and contributions have been critical in driving our success and furthering our mission. We are truly grateful for their valuable insights, dedication, and tireless efforts during their terms as Board Members.

We are delighted to announce that as of June 1, 2024, Sierra Signorelli, Zurich CEO Commercial Insurance and Vicente Cancio, Zurich Spain CEO will join our Board of Trustees as members. Their diverse knowledge and valuable expertise will undoubtedly contribute to our continued growth, further strengthening our ability to serve communities worldwide. We are excited to have them on board and look forward to their valuable contributions.

Our Board Members’ reflections on 2023 

Sylvia Martinez
Member – 2018 - 2024

Sylvia Martinez

“The work conducted in Peru showcases how the Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance through consistent education, information gathering, and improvement actions has driven systemic change. The positive results moved the government to increase investments and adjust policies which are  impacting 457,000 people today and an expected 9.3 million in the near future.”

Kristof Terryn
Member – 2021 - 2026

Kristof Terryn

“There is no better illustration of living the values than the volunteering of time, skills, and expertise. I am so pleased that Z Zurich Foundation’s 2022 Impact Report shows that our volunteering hours are now back to what they were before the pandemic. That’s a credit to each and every Zurich employee who has added tremendous value by giving some of their time to organizations and people in need.”

About Z Zurich Foundation

The Z Zurich Foundation is a Swiss-based charitable foundation established by members of the Zurich Insurance Group. It is the main vehicle by which Zurich Insurance Group delivers on its global community investment strategy.

Additional information

Zurich Insurance Group Ltd and its subsidiaries (Zurich). Excluded are employees of the Farmers Exchanges and Cover-More. Zurich Insurance Group has no ownership interest in the Farmers Exchanges. Farmers Group, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Zurich Insurance Group, provides certain non-claims services and ancillary services to the Farmers Exchanges as attorney-in-fact and receives fees for its services.

Throughout our impact report, you can find links to third-party content. The Z Zurich Foundation does not take any responsibility for such content.