We are living through the Covid -19 pandemic together with the communities all over the world. In response to the needs arising from the pandemic, our Biofore Share and Care programme has contributed to common good through sponsorships, donations, in-kind contributions and bro bono voluntary work. There are a number of local initiatives that we have been supporting during the past months and the valuable work continues.
Covid-19 support for local communities
The pandemic has witnessed a huge surge in demand for facial masks all over the world. UPM Sourcing team has worked closely together with other UPM expert teams to procure all together half a million facial masks that UPM production sites can provide for their local community free of charge. The masks can be given to local healthcare units, nursing homes or similar beneficiaries, and each UPM production site can choose whom they regard as the most deserving local recipient.
The distribution of the facial masks started in the end of June 2020. We want to share with you the stories about our local support and the journey of the masks in various countries.
UPM Changshu provided 15,000 masks to the local municipal government who coordinated the distribution. In addition, close to 1,500 boxes of copy paper were given to 16 hospitals in Wuhan. Hospitals need a great amount of copy paper to print various instructions and guidelines to patients and health care personnel, for example.
UPM is participating in a project aiming to double COVID-19 testing capacity in Finland. A coalition of ten Finnish companies are contributing protecting public health and ensuring that everyone in Finland has equal opportunities to be tested if symptoms appear.
UPM is collaborating with the National Emergency Supply Agency of Finland (NESA) in sourcing protective masks from China. UPM’s pro bono involvement is for the common good. The company has made its sourcing personnel available for NESA free of charge.
In South-Eastern part of Finland the paper, pulp, energy and plywood businesses joined forces and provided all together 40,000 facial masks to home care services and a service provider helping elderly and handicapped people.
UPM Rauma has supported the social and healthcare services of Rauma city by providing 10,000 masks to health services for older people.
UPM Plywood has distributed facial masks to various locations. In Jyväskylä, Jokikartano and Jokihovi home care services received a delivery of 10,00 masks in total. In Savonlinna, the mask contribution was provided for the care of the elderly, for Iltakoti ry and Hopearanta ry. 10,000 masks were given to Kotikaari ry in Mikkeli.
In South Karelia, UPM Kaukas plant provided their support for the social welfare services for senior citizens of the South Karelia Social and Health Care District (Eksote) by giving 40,000 facial masks in total.
UPM Pietarsaari gave 20,000 masks for the Vaasa Central Hospital.
UPM Augsburg paper mill and UPM Augsburg office (the head office of UPM Communication Papers) joined forces and distributed altogether 20,000 face masks to seven social and charitable organizations in the region. The chosen organizations are mostly involved in taking care of homeless people and drug addicts or other people in need.
UPM Raflatac supports the ‘We Test – We Support’ project by the leading laboratories “Diagnostyka” which provides free COVID-19 tests for healthcare personnel and enables easy access to mobile testing also for private citizens in Wrocław region, where UPM Raflatac Poland has factories. Samples are taken at special drive & go-thru collection points.
UPM Plywood in Chudovo provided personal protective equipment to Central Regional Hospital, including surgeon’s overalls, protective masks, shields, hats, shoe covers and respirators, elbow dispensers and alcohol wipes. In addition, over 2,000 protective masks have been delivered to kindergartens and city volunteers who help elderly people.
UPM Raflatac in Scarborough provided local NHS units and care homes with personal protective equipment including visors, safety glasses, aprons, gloves, anti-bacterial wipes and sprays and hand cleansing products. Local care providers and NHS departments were contacted to offer these items, which were then distributed to a variety of locations.
UPM is one of the main sponsors of a public fund raiser called #WeTakeCareUnited in ColectaTe.com.uy. The proceeds have gone towards importing 100 mechanical ventilators and 100 bed monitors for Intensive Care Units, in addition to 31,000 diagnostic kits and 25,000 medical scrubs that are being produced in Uruguay. The campaign was initiated by a group of private businesses that, in dialogue with local government, have identified the critical supplies needed by health professionals in order to cope with increasing patient numbers.
The proceeds are managed by a committee appointed by the sponsoring businesses. The equipment will be donated to the Ministry of Public Health of Uruguay, which will allocate the supplies to public hospitals and health facilities in greatest needs of them.