The FINANCIAL — When businesses create shared value — aligning corporate citizenship with business strategy, engaging their people to act with purpose, and leveraging their strengths to deliver good — they drive powerful, positive change. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation recognized UPS for doing just that.
The U.S. Chamber Foundation’s prestigious Citizens Awards recognize businesses that are responsive and responsible members of their communities, whose overall values, operational practices, and decision-making exemplify how business acts as a leading force for good in society. UPS was acknowledged as “Best Corporate Steward” for its commitment to using its global workforce and network to create a more equitable and sustainable world.
“UPS believes a sense of purpose motivates people,” said Nikki Clifton, President of Social Impact and The UPS Foundation at UPS. “Our work is deeply rooted in the UPS culture, and we lead by example focusing on four key areas: Community Safety; Environmental Sustainability; Equity & Inclusion and Volunteerism. By pioneering dynamic public-private partnerships and harnessing the vast talent and passion of UPSers worldwide, UPS connects people with solutions, and ideas with innovation to help build stronger, safer, communities that are more sustainable, resilient, and more inclusive.”
In response to COVID-19, UPS directed $21 million to 300 relief agencies and distributed 10 million pieces of personal protective equipment worldwide. The company continues to launch innovations that have life-saving impact, including the world’s first medical drone partnership, and a last-mile vaccine delivery service for essential childhood vaccines, expanding access to quality healthcare for millions of families and children across Africa. In 2020 alone, UPS provided more than $1 million in emergency funding, programmatic support and CO2 neutral in-kind transportation to the World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian organization.
On the social justice front, UPS has pledged one million employee volunteer service hours to support mentoring and educational programs in underserved Black communities globally, with The UPS Foundation allocating $3.2 million to fund organizations fighting racial injustice and advocating for change. Another $1 million has been committed to the National Museum of African American History and Culture to raise awareness of past racial injustice in an effort to forge better, more just outcomes for current and future generations.
This year, UPS surpassed its goals of providing more than 20 million volunteer hours and planting 15 million trees by the end of 2020. The company recently announced new goals of planting 50 million trees by 2030 focused on supporting low-income and underserved communities. With this new commitment, UPS aims to improve air quality; foster better health outcomes; increase job opportunities, enhance social engagement; and, create safer and healthier neighborhoods.
“For 21 years, the Citizens Awards have recognized the most innovative and impactful corporate citizenship initiatives that are raising the bar on social responsibility and spearheading the transformation to a strong, healthy and sustainable future,” said Carolyn Cawley, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. “This year’s awards come at a critical time, as the business community steps up to support the pandemic response and help our communities emerge stronger from the multiple crises they’re facing.”
Over the past year, UPS also has been acknowledged for its ongoing sustainability efforts with various distinctions, including being:
- Recognized on Forbes and JUST Capital’s annual JUST 100 list for the fifth consecutive year for its commitment to serving its employees, customers, communities, the environment and shareholders;
- Chosen one of the “Civic 50” by Points of Light for being one of the most community-minded companies in the nation for the sixth time;
- Selected by CR Magazine as one of “100 Best Corporate Citizens” for the 11th consecutive year; and,
- Awarded the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Excellence Award recognizing UPS as an industry leader in freight supply chain environmental performance and energy efficiency.