Unilever ‘United for America’ initiative helps protect lives and livelihoods from the COVID-19 pandemic
Announces $20 million donation of products and services in the U.S., including national Day of Service
Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey (March 25, 2020) – Unilever United States today announced its ‘United for America’ initiative, a wide-ranging set of measures to support the American people during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The company’s actions in the U.S. are part of Unilever’s global effort to help protect the lives and livelihoods of the communities it supports, including its consumers, its customers and suppliers, and workforce, with worldwide contributions of more than €100 million (approximately $108 million USD) to continue helping people affected around the world.
The United for America initiative will include an immediate product donation and will lead to a national Day of Service on May 21, when Unilever United States will dedicate its workforce to the community and donate all the products manufactured at its factories that day or products of equal value to those impacted by COVID-19.
Consumers and Communities
Today, Unilever United States is contributing more than $8 million to help those impacted by the pandemic through donations of its food, soap, personal hygiene, and home cleaning products. Unilever will partner with Feeding America to support a national network of foodbanks to distribute these products to Americans in need.
The donated products include: personal care and hygiene products from Dove, Suave, Degree, TRESemmé, Shea Moisture, Axe, Schmidt’s, Dove Men+Care, Baby Dove, Caress, Love Beauty and Planet, St. Ives, and Nexxus; home cleaning and sanitization products from Seventh Generation; and food products from Knorr, Hellmann’s/Best Foods, Lipton, Tazo, Pure Leaf, Sir Kensington’s, and Maille.
Additionally, Unilever is donating more than 200,000 masks to local hospitals in New Jersey to help protect the lives of health care professionals.
National Day of Service on May 21
In addition to its current donations, Unilever United States is organizing a national Day of Service on May 21 to provide an estimated $12 million of support for Americans in need.
Every essential item produced by Unilever employees at its network of 14 U.S. factories that day or products of equal value will be donated and delivered to its community partners to provide to those most in need. Unilever employees across the country will be invited to dedicate this day to volunteer opportunities that provide hygiene products, food, services, and hope to those impacted by the crisis.
Additionally, Unilever will devote its entire marketing and advertising spend that day to support the Day of Service by promoting non-profit partners, relief organizations, and other community groups that will distribute products to those most in need.
Over the next eight weeks, Unilever will mobilize its network by asking its partners – including retailers, technology companies, delivery enterprises, packaging suppliers, and media companies – to join in this initiative and demonstration of hope.
Our Customers and Suppliers
Unilever will offer €500 million (approximately $540 million USD) of cash flow relief worldwide to support livelihoods across its extended value chain through: early payment for its most vulnerable small and medium sized suppliers, to help them with financial liquidity; and extending credit to selected small-scale retail customers whose business relies on Unilever, to help them manage and protect jobs.
Unilever will protect its global workforce from sudden drops in pay, as a result of market disruption or being unable to perform their role, for up to three months. This will cover all employees, contractors and others who we manage or who work on Unilever’s sites, on a full- or part-time basis. This will apply to workers not already covered by government plans or by their direct employer.
Unilever’s brands are also taking action now. Personal care, hygiene and homecare brands including Suave, Dove, Vaseline and Seventh Generation, are working to support people and communities in need – from sharing educational content about healthy hygiene habits and handwashing to increasing support to small businesses. Food brands Knorr and Hellmann’s/Best Foods are working with partners to ensure quality, nutritious food is accessible to all. Brands will continue to act in new ways to support people and communities as the situation evolves.
Fabian Garcia, president of Unilever North America, said: “Our hearts go out to all those who are suffering from this pandemic. Unilever is ‘United for America’ because we are all in this together and only together will we defeat this virus. Our people are committed to supporting all Americans – especially those most in need – with the resources to act to protect the wellbeing of their families and their communities. We will do this by ensuring access to hygiene, nutrition and sanitation products, and by working through our brands to inform and educate people to help them in this difficult time.”