People’s health is very important to us: it is one of the raison d’être of our business activities and one of our main areas of social action.
We are committed to raising awareness and providing education in the field of the sustainability, the aging population, the prevention of illness and addiction, maternal and neonatal health, and the adoption of healthy lifestyles, also including amateur sports initiatives.
We support scientific research in the sphere of medicine, with particular focus on degenerative illnesses.
In terms of safety, we also focus on projects to improve road safety.
Towards a society where generations meet each others
In Germany, the Generali Zukunftsfonds (Generali Future Fund), established in 2008 to address the issue of demographic change, supports projects and initiatives that aim to deal with the consequences of an aging population, enhancing the resources, skills and time of older people.
The Fund seeks to act as an agent of change, promoting civic engagement and acting as an intermediary between businesses, Institutions and social organisations, particularly for the exchange of information and the creation of networks, with the goal of investing in social innovations that can act as models for the economy. More specifically, in recent years the Zukunftsfonds sponsorship strategy has sought to create infrastructure to professionalise, stabilise and increase the capacity of high-potential voluntary work. To increase the collective impact, sponsorships are normally granted together with those of other companies, foundations or public Institutions.
The organisations that Zukunftsfonds has invested in include Generationenbrücke Deutschland (Bridge Between Generations Germany) of Aachen, which has recently also branched out into other areas of the country and which promotes activities that involve the younger generations taking care of the elderly.
The organisation organises visits to retirement homes by children, who are provided with suitable preparation beforehand: the meeting of two distant generations becomes an opportunity for growth, for awareness and for taking responsibility.
The retirement homes themselves improve their services and their image among the public as the activities have now become a routine part of the lives of both children and the elderly.
All of the activities carried out by Generationenbrücke Deutschland stand out for their high levels of quality and efficiency, which involve the application of business management methodologies.
Since 2010, corporate volunteering initiatives proposed by the employees themselves, who the Fund finances for a maximum of 750 euro per project, have been carried out under the motto Helfen hilft - Gemeinsam stark (Helping helps – Together we are strong). Volunteering days are held each year between August and October and have so far involved 1,850 employees of the Group companies in Germany. In 2014 around 25 projects were launched in this area, involving 260 employees. In line with the mission of the Fund, the projects must be based on issues related to demographic change and involve the over-50s.
In the quest for social innovation aimed in particular at enhancing the skills of the older age groups and identifying their needs, Zukunftsfonds attributes great importance to the availability of up-to-date data on the reference population. For this reason, in 2012, together with Allensbach, Germany’s leading public opinion research institute, the Fund carried out the first survey into the lifestyles of 65-85 year-olds. The data on relations with voluntary work show that:
The research therefore provided a new prospect for an age group that is a valuable active resource for society.
In 2014 the continuation of this research, Generali Hochaltrigenstudie, carried out in association with the Institut für Gerontologie of the University of Heidelberg, tasked itself with identifying the problems and the potential of the civic engagement of 85-99 year-olds through 400 direct interviews. Also in this case the results highlighted their social potential:
Revert, or the dream of beating ALS
Some areas of modern medicine have reached extraordinary levels of development and their impact on the welfare choices of states and demographic structures is increasingly significant. Concepts such as aging, longevity, life expectancy, and widespread and sustainable well-being have become part of the agendas and debates of policy makers, and are becoming key factors in determining the success of the long-term strategic choices of countries. Against this backdrop there is a particularly important field of science at the frontier of medical knowledge, one which has that spirit of adventurous forward-thinking that makes science so fascinating: stem cell research.
It is a field that embeds better than others dreams and human tension for a world without disease.
In this sphere, Generali continues to work alongside Revert, one of the most important international associations involved in supporting scientific research into neurodegenerative diseases such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), for which there is no cure. Led by Professor Angelo Vescovi, a pioneer acknowledged at global level for his studies into stem cells, Revert works in a sector whose social repercussions are and will be enormous: it has been calculated that the total cost of neurological illnesses in 2010 amounted to 798 billion dollars (60% of which direct costs, 40% of which due to loss of productivity).
Generali’s support, in what is a 3-year partnership, has resulted in an important acceleration in experimentation processes. More specifically, Revert is concluding the first phase of experimentation on a first group of 18 patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, with the transplant of brain stem cells into the spinal cord in order to combat the degenerative effects of the illness.
The trial will conclude in May 2015 and involves the submission of the clinical results to the Italian supervisory authorities for their overall assessment, the aim being to begin the second phase of the trial on a group of 60-80 patients. This highly important and delicate phase will see the application of the therapeutic results achieved until now, which have so far been promising. The scientific report on this trial will be published in the form of a peer-reviewed article in the Journal of Translational Medicine, one of the most important publications in the sector.
In the meantime, the Revert researchers have launched a process to begin experimenting on patients with multiple sclerosis, another debilitating and very common neurodegenerative illness: the first tests on patients should begin in 2015 or by early 2016.
Apple and Lemon
In Slovakia, in association with the national police Generali carried out a campaign to educate about traffic safety and to raise awareness of the issues of speeding and alcohol abuse.
The police organised a week-long network of roadside checks in the presence of students, teachers and agents of Group companies. The drivers who were stopped were given a fruit, an apple or a lemon, depending on whether they were driving virtuously or in violation of the Highway Code.
The former were also given a drawing of the fruit by the students and an apple car fragrance, while the latter received a pamphlet on road safety (as well as their relative penalty).
The drivers interviewed after the checks said that they appreciated the initiative and, above all, interacting with the students.
Gentleman on the road
In the Czech Republic, the Gentleman silnick (Gentleman of the road) project, also carried out with the state police, seeks to encourage drivers and pedestrians to take responsibility in the event of a road accident. Each year the initiative awards a prize and a certificate of merit to the gentleman of the road who took action to help people involved in a road accident.
A website was set up in support of the initiative on which it is possible to vote for the gentleman of the road. The site also has information on how to act in the event of a road accident as well as an educational video that is also available on the YouTube channel.
Charte du Sport Responsable
Since 2010, the year the Responsible Sports Charter was launched, Generali France has actively promoted the culture of sustainability in the sporting arena.
This broad initiative actually covers various aspects of interest to Generali: social inclusion, equal opportunities, health protection, risk prevention and the safeguarding of the environment.
The Charter identifies six core principles for sporting activity that respects others and the environment:
Nine national sports federations - volleyball, cycling, football, equestrian, golf, table tennis, badminton, American football, triathlon - have adopted the Charter, recognising its values and pledging to spread them in their respective disciplines.
The Charter is flanked by a website, www.sport-responsable.com, where the associations can share and promote their best practices. The site also has continuously updated news on sports initiatives, competitions and events, always with the aim of presenting sport as a vehicle for spreading the values of commitment, respect and solidarity.
Every year the Responsible Sport Trophy sees a jury of experts choose and reward the most deserving associations in six different categories, which correspond to the principles expressed by the Charter. The winners are awarded with a financial contribution of between 1,000 and 3,000 euro to support their ongoing projects. The awards ceremony takes place on an evening attended by at least one of our Group’s ambassadors: Zinedine Zidane, Jean-Louis Etienne or Nicolas Lunven.