24 million people have benefited from BBVA’s social programs over the past three years
The country's Open Talent Final at the Zurich Impact Hub in the trendy Zurich West district went as punctually as Swiss clockwork. Jointly organized with Seedstars and Open Innovation, Switzerland's first ever edition of the event was a success in terms of turnout and certainly lived up to all the hype. Entrepreneurship, enthusiasm and innovation pervaded throughout event, which was evident during the final project lunch, where attendees had a moment to share their impressions and ideas.
BBVA has invested more than €300 million over the past three years as part of its Community Investment Plan, supporting a total of 24 million people. In 2018 alone, BBVA allocated more than €104 million to social programs that reached eight million people around the world.
Breaking down the 2018 figures, BBVA allocated a total of €7.6 million to financial education, which supported two million people; the bank put €9 million into entrepreneurship programs, which helped 2.2 million people; and support for knowledge, education, and culture received €75.5 million, which impacted 3.8 million beneficiaries. BBVA also allocated €12 million to other programs that are not included in the previously mentioned categories.
BBVA maintains the momentum of its strategic areas included in the Community Investment Plan for the 2016-2018 period, which include the following, listed in order of priority:
1. Financial education
This is a long-term priority for BBVA. In 2008, the bank created the Global Financial Education Plan, investing a total of €80 million in this plan to date, and supporting more than 13.4 million people. BBVA’s financial education strategy is based on:
- Financial education for society: BBVA’s programs are implemented everywhere the bank has a presence in order to improve knowledge of financial concepts and obtain a change in behavior by making informed and responsible financial decisions.
- Financial education with customer solutions in mind: The development of global and local solutions to help improve financial health and create opportunities.
- Promotion of financial education. In collaboration with various national and international organizations, and especially thanks to the Center for Financial Education and Capability, BBVA promotes the creation of multidisciplinary spaces for knowledge and debate and supports research on a wide range of topics related to financial education and training.
Over the past year, seven percent of the total resources from the 2016-2018 Community Investment Plan were allocated to this strategic area, which has benefited nearly two million people.
Programs supporting entrepreneurship are included in this strategic area of the Community Investment Plan. These programs have become more relevant and have given great impetus to the development of initiatives designed for more vulnerable entrepreneurs and those whose businesses have a positive social impact. In 2018, the bank allocated nearly €9 million to entrepreneurship, which has benefited 2.2 million people around the world.
BBVA also bolsters the social entrepreneurship ecosystem through its participation in leading organizations, such as the European Venture Philanthropy Association and the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs.
3. Knowledge, education, and culture
These three activity areas are grouped together in one of the Community Investment Plan’s lines of action. It encompasses the activities carried out by the BBVA Foundation that seeks to generate knowledge through scientific research and cultural creation, as well as educational and cultural social programs developed in the countries where BBVA has a presence. In 2018, the bank invested €75.5 million in this area, benefitting 3.8 million people. BBVA also helps to share knowledge through BBVA Research’s and the OpenMind initiative.
BBVA’s activities to support the community include other lines of action, such as volunteering, support to the social organization and the promotion of corporate responsibility through its participation in the main national and international corporate social responsibility forums.
BBVA’s social program and the Sustainable Development Goals
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals are very much present in BBVA’s activities. Through its Community Investment Plan, its programs, initiatives, and actions, BBVA helps to attain Sustainable Development Goals 1 (No poverty), 2 (zero Hunger), 3 (Good health and well-being), 4 (Quality education), 5 (Gender equality), 8 (Decent work and economic growth), 14 (Life below water), 15 (Life on land), 16 (Peace, justice and strong institutions) and 17 (Partnerships for the goals).
BBVA Microfinance promotes the development of Latin American women
In its Social Performance Report, which it has just presented, the BBVA Microfinance Foundation (BBVAMF) describes its contribution to the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, which recognise the importance of financial inclusion and microfinances for their achievement. The Foundation provides financial products and services to at-risk communities in Latin America, in particular to women, to promote their development. According to the World Bank, nearly one in every two does not have a bank account.
BBVA adheres to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Banking
BBVA joined in launching the Principles for Responsible Banking at the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) global roundtable in Paris.