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RB commits £1 million to vulnerable communities in the Middle East

RB is pledging £1 million to the International Rescue Committee’s (IRC) response to the COVID-19 pandemic

20 May 20204 minute read

Download the press release here

Download the press release here Download PDF

20 May 2020, Slough, UK – As part of our fight to make access to hygiene, wellness and nourishment a right and not a privilege, RB is pledging £1 million to the International Rescue Committee’s (IRC) response to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing lifesaving programmes for the world’s most vulnerable communities.

Through our Fight for Access Fund, we will support:

  • The IRC’s front-line COVID-19 response in refugee and vulnerable communities in Lebanon, Jordan and Syria; and
  • The IRC’s Crisis Response Fund, a dedicated fund which supports emergency COVID-19 interventions across 40 countries.

During this unprecedented era, medical care, WASH and hygiene interventions, shelter and continuation of services for vulnerable communities are more critical than ever before. This funding will enable the IRC to reach approximately 13,000 people with vital health services in Jordan and Syria and economic recovery and child education and protection programmes in Lebanon; it will also  support the IRC to rapidly detect, respond to and prevent further transmission of the disease in other countries where it operates.

In March, we launched our Fight for Access Fund which is, and will be, a demonstration of our commitment to protect, heal and nurture in the relentless pursuit of a cleaner, healthier world. To deliver on commitment we have:

  • Set aside the equivalent of one per cent of adjusted operating profit each year to this Fund
  • Committed over £40 million to benefit communities consistent with our purpose
  • Reinvested a further £10 million of COVID-19 cost savings in support of local initiatives

“Access to high-quality hygiene should be available to all, particularly at this critical time. Improving access for the most vulnerable communities, and living our purpose, is why we created our Fight for Access Fund.

Bart Meermans

SVP Health Africa/ Middle East / Turkey, RB

Bart Meermans continued, "Supporting the IRC’s lifesaving work on the frontline of the most pressing humanitarian disasters and healthcare emergencies is a clear demonstration of our purpose and fight in action.”

For further information, please contact:

Patty O’Hayer: +44 (0)7825 755688

James Fearnley-Marr: +44 (0)7408 963679

About RB our response to COVID-19

RB* is driven by its purpose to protect, heal and nurture in a relentless pursuit of a cleaner, healthier world. We fight to make access to the highest-quality hygiene, wellness and nourishment a right, not a privilege, for everyone.

As a global leader in hygiene, health & nutrition, we have a responsibility to play our part in combating Coronavirus. Since the outbreak began, we have undertaken initiatives to donate, educate and inform.

Highlights include: 

  • Launching the RB Fight for Access Fund to improve access to health, hygiene and nutrition for all. The Fund is, and will, be a demonstration of our Purpose and Fight in action - to protect, heal and nurture in the relentless pursuit of a cleaner, healthier world. We have made donations in Wuhan, across Africa, in the US to the CDC Foundation, in South Asia, South East Asia and the Middle East.
  • The Dettol India The Hand Wash Challenge campaign with TikTok has reached over 100 billion views. This record-breaking campaign getting important behaviour change messages to young people on the necessity of hand washing.

  • Partnering with the Economist Intelligence Unit, along with other public health experts, to create the Myth Busting website in the fight against what the WHO has coined as the ‘Infodemic’ or the spread of misinformation. Covid-19facts.com is a platform for education which has reached millions of consumers with credible scientific information. 

  • In the Middle East specifically, we have deployed the multiple initiatives; In Saudi Arabia, we have joined forces with the Health Endowment Fund – the strategic partner of Ministry of Health, to contribute USD 1M in products to help keep frontline health workers safe. Additionally, we have provided care packages to 15,000 frontline workers in hospitals. Dettol has also rolled out Labour Camp Education and Sanitization program across some of United Arab Emirates’ key labour camps - reaching 14,000 workers across 12 camps to provide them with free cleaning and sanitisation services as well as hygiene focused education programs. Dettol has also partnered with Altibbi - the leading digital health platform in the Arab world, to provide 10,000 free online consultations to consumers in the region to further support the public with reliable information during the pandemic.

Learn more about the IRC and its COVID-19 response at https://www.rescue-uk.org/topic/coronavirus-response