Social Investment Projects

WE INVEST IN ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT TO CHANGE LATIN AMERICA FOR THE BETTER

Our social investments consider four main focus areas: Financial Education, Impact Entrepreneurship, Economic Development Projects, and Arts and Culture. They are closely aligned to our institutional purpose and to critical demands in Latin America.

I. Financial Education:

Through financial education, we offer core business knowledge for individuals to make their financial lives better. For example, we created two Bank of America Merrill Lynch financial education games for low-income public school children between 7-10 and 11-14 years to complement the Your Financial Future educational material developed for low-income teens starting at age of 14 and adults, in partnership with United Way.

A pilot project for more than 20,000 public school students and teachers is being implemented in partnership with Instituto Brasil Solidário in the Brazilian state of Ceará. We have hired an outside firm to evaluate the pilot program’s effectiveness and to ensure it’s having the intended impact. Once this is accomplished we expect to expand the program to other regions and countries.

 

II. Impact Entrepreneurship:

We support the development of for-profit and non-profit businesses and business environments that will create responsible growth to our societies, educate entrepreneurs, generate new jobs and empower women.

To do this, we partnered with the Nobel Peace Prize Winner Muhammad Yunus team by solely co-founding the Yunus Corporate Action Tank, a pioneer project in Brazil to support large organizations who want to create their own social business as a side business.This acceleration model is being replicated in France and India, In our first cycle in 2016, the Yunus Corporate Action Tank accelerated important corporations, including Ambev and Randstad, which are launching social businesses already. Ambev is commercializing since beginning of 2017 its first water bottle brand called AMA, out of which 100% of the profits are invested into projects that provide water solutions for communities in the dry northeast region of the country, having benefited 3.000 individuals in less than 6 month of operation. Randstand is using its expertise and technology to address an important gap by enabling companies to find professionals with disabilities, and professionals with disabilities to access the market, through a new service that will reinvest 100% of its profits to increase its own reach and impact. Nestlé, Johnson & Johnson, Natura and Caixa are being accelerated in the 2017 cycle.

Additionally, as part of our work to build strong communities through mentorship and intellectual capital, Bank of America Merrill Lynch supported the first two editions of BrazilLAB, an initiative of the Center for Public Leadership (CLP) ― located in Sao Paulo, Brazil ― a program to encourage entrepreneurs to bring up solutions for problems affecting the public sector. Through the BrazilLAB program, we seek to build a connection between innovative ideas from the private sector and the needs of the public sector, offering the networking needed to engage entrepreneurs and to implement new ideas.

III. Economic Development Projects:

Through economic development projects, we assist geographic regions and specific sectors to prosper and to make economies thrive.

In Mexico, we had a prominent role in initiating the alliance between AMBA (Food Bank Association), the largest food bank association in Mexico, and the Egyptian Food Bank to bring an innovative food redistribution model to fight hunger to Latin America. The Egyptian Model benefitted more than 12 million people and has been implemented in more than 20 countries. BofAML is one of the co-founders of this program that has so far served 165 thousand meals, is present in 15 Mexican states and counts with the partnership of almost 150 hotels and restaurants.

Additionally, Bank of America Merrill Lynch supports The Nature Conservancy in Brazil (TNC) with the Green-Blue Water Coalition. This project aims to increase water security in 12 Brazilian Metropolitan areas that represent 45% of Brazil’s GDP and will benefit a population of more than 60 million.

IV. Arts & Culture:

A thriving arts and culture sector benefits economies and societies. Our work helps strengthen arts institutions that contribute to local economies and is designed to engage people in creative ways to build mutual respect and understanding.

Our Art Conservation Project provides grants to nonprofits to conserve works that are significant to the cultural heritage of a country or region, or important to the history of art. On the most recent projects, in Colombia, 10 Noé León paintings were restored with our support. In Brazil, Bodas de Caná by Candido Portinari, which is also going to be exhibited for the public for the first time since it was created 60 years ago, and in Chile, three pieces from Roberto Matta: Eramen, Être Atout, La Lumiére del L’Honri, have received restorations grants. In Mexico, 41 murals were restored at Antiguo Colegio San Ildefonso. This is one of the most important collections of the Mexican muralists Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Jose Clemente Orozco, among others. Since 2012, we have had the honor to finance the restoration of 105 art pieces in Latin America.

Through the Arts in Our Communities® program, we have converted our corporate art collection into a unique community resource from which museums and nonprofit galleries may borrow complete or customized exhibitions at no cost. Our first exhibition in Latin America was Conversations: Photographs from the Bank of America Collection, exhibited at Antigue Colegion San Ildefonso in Mexico in 2016, also in Brazil in 2017, where it gathered a public of +96.000 at our partner Tomie Ohtake Institute in São Paulo.

These are only some examples from many other initiatives currently undertaken in Latin America that reflect our deepest respect and responsibility towards the Latin countries, cultures and societies.


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