Royal London and Edentree unveil social partnerships

Supporting social enterprises and water safety among ethnic minority children

Royal London and Edentree have announced initiatives showing they are giving back to society at a time when it is rebuilding from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

UK life and pensions company Royal London has launched a social innovation programme called Changemakers, which works with social enterprises dedicated to creating and investing in new ways of building financial resilience to life shocks.

See also: – Royal London joins governance network

These shocks can be a major personal life event that have a deep and detrimental impact, such as bereavement, serious illness, separation or divorce, and job loss, or a societal shock such as a global pandemic or the effects of a transition to a low carbon economy.

Royal London will work with partners Year Here and The School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) to find and support 10 individuals and 10 social enterprises to develop and scale up potential solutions. They will receive grants awarded by a panel made up of individuals who have faced life shocks, financial inclusion experts, and representation from charity partner and poverty experts Turn2Us. Royal London will then provide insight and business support to the ‘changemakers’ to ensure they are driving change through social innovation.

See also: – How is corporate governance linked to financial performance?

Head of mutuality and impact at Royal London Nadia Al Yafai commented: “Life shocks can affect anyone at any time, and as a mutual we have to play a role in building long term solutions for both our customers and for wider society, to protect today and invest in tomorrow. That is why we are collaborating with our expert partners and changemakers over the coming months and working with them to drive social innovation based on lived experience and deep insight.

“We look forward to welcoming our changemakers and being mutually responsible in making a positive impact.”

Recruitment for existing social enterprises began on 19 April through SSE with the first cohort of changemakers being announced in June. More information and details of how to apply can be found here.  

Edentree partners with Olympic hopeful

Meanwhile, sustainable investment managers EdenTree Investment Management has entered a brand partnership with Team GB Olympic hopeful Alice Dearing (pictured) to further its commitment to the environment, diversity, and financial literacy within their shared communities.

Dearing is World and European junior open water swimming champion on a path to becoming the first black female swimmer to represent Team GB at the Tokyo Olympic Games, and also co-founder and brand ambassador for the Black Swimming Association.

Edentree highlighted Sport England data that shows one in four children leave primary school unable to swim, while a staggering 95% of black adults and 80% of black children do not swim, which is understood to be due to entrenched and complex barriers that mean people of colour and ethnic minority communities are being consistently excluded from aquatics, and therefore leaving their communities without necessary education in water safety. 

The collaboration will look to promote financial literacy among younger generations, helping them understand and learn about money through various outreach initiatives tailored to schools and colleges.

Furthermore, as an open water swimmer, Dearing said the issues of sustainability and protection of the environment are paramount to her on a performance and personal level, and EdenTree said it plays a leading role in driving investor engagement on the reduction of ocean pollution and has been “particularly outspoken on the threat plastics pose to biodiversity and human health”.

Commenting on the new partnership, Andy Clark, CEO of EdenTree, said: “Alice’s passion and commitment to improving diversity in swimming and protecting our oceans strongly align with EdenTree’s responsible and sustainable principles. Alice also has a real interest in educating the younger generations around the importance of financial security and literacy, something we hope to work closely with her on throughout this relationship.” 

Dearing added: “This partnership will be a great collaboration, bringing together elite performance alongside a passion to engage and create change for a shared community and our environment. I look forward to working with EdenTree to shine a positive light in both the financial industry and society.” 

In association with our sister publications, ESG Clarity has launched a Campaign for Better Governance.

It will see us shine a spotlight on investment companies as well as the businesses in which they invest.


Natalie Kenway

Natalie is editor in chief at MA Financial covering ESG Clarity, Portfolio Adviser and International Adviser. She was previously global head of ESG insight for ESG Clarity and has been an investment journalist...