Supporting the development of vulnerable groups of people is critical to prosperity as a society. We promote various initiatives to support inclusion and sustainability around the world. Evidence of this work, is the recognition of International Finance Magazine, which names us as the most socially responsible bank in Mexico.
To create an environment where everyone has the same opportunities, regardless of their social position, birthplace or educational level, is one of our bank's challenges. In order to achieve this, we support inclusive progress which provides a balance between economic growth, social welfare, environmental protection and educational equity.
In Mexico, we have carried out initiatives to support this for many years now. Our efforts have seen us recognised for the third time as the “Most Socially Responsible Bank in Mexico” in the International Finance Banking Awards presented by the UK publication, International Finance Magazine.
One of our biggest efforts as the most socially responsible bank in Mexico has been to ensure that the most disadvantaged people there have access to quality education. For that reason, Santander Mexico has channelled investment of over MXN 1,200 million (EUR 55 million) via the Higher Education Support Plan; an unprecedented contribution in Mexico, and one which makes us the financial institution which provides the most support for university education in that country. This sum represents the award of more than 63,000 scholarships in collaboration with over 800 public and private universities.
In addition, aware of our ability to improve the situation for the most disadvantaged groups, we have launched numerous programmes and initiatives, in which we have put a great deal of economic and human resources, to support people at risk of social exclusion. As an example of this, Santander Mexico, through its employees, created the children's trust, "Fideicomiso por los Niños de México", 24 years ago.
Thanks to this trust, employees can donate part of their salaries to help children in poverty through the financing of educational projects (extra-curricular activities, provision of uniforms, school supplies, text books and workshops promoting socialisation), improve the quality of nutrition (breakfast, lunch, dinner, nutritional status diagnosis, personalised malnutrition and obesity prevention programmes) and health (bone marrow and kidney transplants, hearing aids, provision of specialist equipment and medications, medical assistance, psychiatric and psychological treatment, prevention and treatment of addictions). In total, this programme has donated over MXN 123 million to more than 600 organisations, benefitting 325,000 children in poverty in the country.
Financial inclusion to promote equality
Our Mexican subsidiary has also launched initiatives that guarantee financial inclusion in the country, in order to help reduce social inequality. An example of this, is the Tuiio programme, an ambitious initiative that guarantees the society access to banking services through microcredits. In addition, the initiative involves a financial education programme for people to be able to use banking services quickly and easily.
This and all the actions that we carry out to achieve a responsible equality has led to our acknowledgement as the leading bank in social responsibility in the Mexican Stock Exchange's Sustainability Index , as an example of corporate governance, social responsibility and environmental protection.