We recognize that education is key to lifting people out of poverty and is one of the most powerful drivers of economic growth, social mobility and well-being. That’s why KPMG's Global Board is committed to supporting Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 ‘Quality Education and Lifelong Learning’ globally. We’re currently establishing quantified and measurable impact-focused goals that we will track, measure and report.
During the pandemic, over 1.5 billion learners have had their education severely impacted. The closure of schools and the move to remote learning has had a disproportional impact on vulnerable children, especially those with limited or no access to technology. We’re proud to be one of the private sector founding members of UNESCO’s Global Education Coalition, along with Microsoft, GSMA, Weidong, Google, Facebook, Zoom and Coursera. As part of this initiative, we’re deploying subject matter experts from KPMG firms around the world, on a pro bono basis, to help scale up distance learning solutions, so that no child or young person is left behind.
We’re a flagship partner with Enactus, an international organization that supports future leaders and drives positive change in communities across the globe. We help to connect students with academic and business leaders, through entrepreneurial-based projects that empower people to transform opportunities into real, sustainable progress. KPMG has supported Enactus for more than two decades and, today, uses its scale to mentor students and support national programs in more than 30 countries. In 2020, we were the presenting sponsor of the Enactus World Cup, to showcase social enterprise projects. A record 500,000 attendees, from 81 countries, participated virtually. KPMG people acted as judges and panelists, and 97 percent of attendees said they learned something that will help them in future.
KPMG in India is working with children studying at schools in marginalized communities, who lack access to computers and laptops at home. With schools closed across the nation, they’re shifting to online classes. In addition to providing over 65 laptops and more than 450 tablets, volunteers from KPMG in India are helping teachers develop virtual content for students, and holding story reading sessions. Volunteers have also held sessions to help in subjects such as Economics and Accountancy for students in the senior grades who are struggling to keep up with online teaching. These efforts are making a difference in keeping children engaged at home and maintaining their learning momentum.
In response to the pandemic, KPMG in the UK adapted its education program to reach more than 45,000 young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, preparing them for the world of work, helping with academic support and mentoring. In 2018, the UK firm founded National Numeracy Day, a campaign that raises awareness of the importance of numeracy in everyday life and helps people feel confident with numbers. In 2020, 54,000 people started their journey towards improved numeracy, bringing us to a total of over 103,000 since 2018 and more than 1,300 organizations have signed up as champions. As part of the UK firm’s Pro Bono for Better program, it supported the Oak National Academy, an online classroom built as a collective response from teachers and education specialists to support children’s learning at home and guard against further disruption. With the support of the Department for Education, the UK firm helped produce 10,000 lessons in a 4-week period to complement the provision of lessons both in school and virtually. In Oak’s first term, 20 million lessons were delivered to 4.7 million Oak pupils. In recognition of our work, the UK firm won Best Community Programme at the 2020 Social Mobility awards.
The stress the pandemic has placed on our communities has been felt far and wide. We have each experienced or heard stories of the loneliness our colleagues, loved ones or the elderly have faced during lockdowns; seen the stresses placed on the emergency services and healthcare workers; and seen the struggles many have dealt with getting the food, medicines and other essential supplies they need to meet their basic needs. Throughout these times, we try to use our skills and resources to help alleviate these burdens by making an immediate difference to those that need it the most.
KPMG China raised more than US$500,000 in donations through a staff-matched fundraising appeal, which helped to fund urgently needed medical supplies and equipment. Meanwhile in Ireland, our people volunteered to support elderly citizens at home. At KPMG in Italy, we’ve supported 45 Family Houses that host about 800 care leaver children for many years. In 2020, we doubled our financial contribution to supply health equipment and provide hundreds of refurbished KPMG computers to children, giving them critical access to online teaching while helping advance the circular economy.
During the height of the pandemic’s first wave, KPMG in South Africa committed US$135,000 to support education, food relief and action against gender-based violence. One organization we’re supporting with this investment is Face Clues, a non-governmental organization that uses speech therapy techniques to improve language at schools. KPMG in South Africa also supported 10 Early Childhood Development Centers through teacher stipends, reaching more than 500 children and 70 staff.
We recognize more needs to be done and are establishing impact-focused targets against SDG 4. Currently we monitor the monetary value and time investment KPMG and its people make in support of community initiatives, the majority of which is focused on supporting education and lifelong learning.
Our Impact Plan represents the collective environmental, social and governance commitments of independent KPMG firms, affiliated with KPMG International Limited. The data represented in Our Impact Plan is aggregated data from KPMG firms for the 12 months to 30 September 2020 unless stated otherwise. KPMG International Limited is a private English company limited by guarantee and does not provide services to clients. Where the term “ KPMG,” “ firm,” “ we” or similar references are used without definition, they are meant to collectively refer to KPMG International Limited and the independent KPMG firms.