BBVA earmarked €131 million for social programs and investment in the community in 2022, almost 19% more than the previous year's €106.3 million. The contribution reached 77.8 million people overall, 43% more than in the previous year.
BBVA's social programs reached 8.8 million people directly--including almost three million entrepreneurs, 856,000 people trained in financial literacy and 772,000 participants in educational programs. In addition, 1.7 million people received social assistance and a further 2.6 million benefited directly from research and cultural programs.
In addition, 7.7 million people benefited indirectly through their relationship with the direct beneficiaries of the social programs, while 61.3 million people accessed free high-quality content by subscribing to BBVA's platforms.
Through these activities, BBVA is moving forward to meet the goals set out in its Community Commitment 2025, to allocate €550 million from 2021 to 2025 to social initiatives that support inclusive growth in the societies within the bank’s footprint. In the first two years of the commitment (2021 and 2022), the bank achieved close to 43% of its investment target, with €237.2 million, and reached 62.2% of the 100 million people it expects to help by 2025. (1)
With its Community Commitment 2025, BBVA seeks to contribute to the fulfillment of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by taking action on three focal points.
Focal point 1. Reducing inequality and promoting entrepreneurship (SDGs 8 and 10)
BBVA conducts a range of initiatives to reduce social and economic inequality and promote entrepreneurship, such as: support for low-income entrepreneurs through the BBVA Microfinance Foundation and other programs to support entrepreneurs, training in financial literacy to empower the population, promotion of financial inclusion, employability and digitalization, and social assistance programs, such as training courses for Ukraine war refugees.
BBVA allocated €17.7 million (14% of all investment in the community) this focal point of action, directly and indirectly reaching over 12.6 million people.
Support for entrepreneurs
BBVA supports vulnerable entrepreneurs through various initiatives. One of the key players in this regard is the BBVA Microfinance Foundation, which closed 2022 cementing its position in the microfinance sector and celebrating 15 years of activity in which it has served more than six million entrepreneurs in five Latin American countries. For the fourth consecutive year, it has been recognized by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) as the leading foundation in terms of contribution to development in Latin America. Organización para la Cooperación y el Desarrollo Económicos (OCDE).
Last year, BBVA channeled €1.47 billion in loans to vulnerable entrepreneurs through the Foundation's microfinance institutions. The institutions currently serve more than 2.8 million customers, mostly women.
Financial education and literacy
During 2022, initiatives were undertaken to promote financial inclusion of unbanked groups and improve the financial health and resilience of people with limited access to financial services or who are underserved. In 2022, financial education and literacy programs helped 855,646 people. That same year, almost 30 million users accessed BBVA's financial education websites, 62% more than the previous year.
From 2008 to 2022, BBVA has invested €97.3 million and trained more than 17.4 million people in financial literacy in the countries within its footprint. Since 2020, more than 37.8 million people accessed financial education content available through the bank’s digital platforms.
War in Ukraine
In 2022 BBVA launched a community response plan to Russia's invasion of Ukraine to help alleviate the effects of the humanitarian emergency triggered by the war.
The measures adopted included a donation of €1 million, split 50/50 between UNICEF and UNHCR.To supplement this aid, BBVA launched a campaign in support of UNICEF, UNHCR, Red Cross and Doctors of the World that channeled donations from employees, customers and non-customers amounting to €2.37 million through the Bizum app and bank transfers.
Focal point 2. Creating opportunities for everyone through education (SDG 4)
BBVA offers a wide range of initiatives to promote access to high-quality education. This includes programs to reduce the digital education gap, scholarships for access to high-quality education, and programs for the development of values and skills and in support of higher education and vocational training.
In addition, the bank partners with public education systems to create free, high-quality content that is distributed through a range of channels.
BBVA's country manager in Colombia, Mario Pardo, during a visit to the Livio Reginaldo Fischione school in Guajira, Colombia.
In 2022, BBVA invested more than €77 million in educational programs (59% of community investment in 2022), benefiting more than 57 million people directly and indirectly.
Key initiatives in the field of education included:
Aprendemos Juntos 2030 (‘Learning Together’)
This project, recognized by the United Nations for its contribution to the SDGs, underwent a major transformation in 2022 to become Aprendemos Juntos 2030. In this new stage, the educational content supports a a greener and more inclusive future and involves leading international figures. The platform attracted 3.5 million users during 2022, one million more than the previous year.
Chavos que inspiran (‘Young role models’)
The BBVA Mexico Foundation focuses on the educational field with its flagship program “Chavos que Inspiran”. The initiative seeks to transform the lives of young people with limited resources through scholarships and support for 10 years. An estimated 8 out of 10 scholarship recipients will be the first in their family to finish college, rise above the poverty line, and achieve a socioeconomic status that otherwise would not have been attained for four generations.
The program, which invested more than €50 million in 2022 across more than 1,700 municipalities, supported nearly 50,000 scholarship recipients in the 2022-2023 academic year, including 652 young people with disabilities
Educación Conectada (‘Connected Education’)
Educación Conectada is a partnership launched in 2020 by BBVA and Fundación Fad Juventud that aims to narrow the digital gap in the educational system and support the entire educational community, from school management and teaching staff to families and students.
In 2022, Educación Conectada (‘connected education’) trained more than 22,000 people.
Focal point 3. Supporting research and the arts (SDGs 9 and 11)
Finally, mainly through the BBVA Foundation, BBVA conducts initiatives to support researchers and creators in science, the arts and economics, leading cultural institutions and scientific literacy programs. In 2022, the bank allocated €30.2 million (23% of all investment in the community) to this focal point of action, reaching over 8 million people (10% of the total).
The BBVA Foundation focuses on generating knowledge as a way to successfully address the issues faced by today's society, such as the environment, sustainable development, health, demographic change and globalization. The direct promotion of scientific research is one of the levers on which the BBVA Foundation is based, together with the recognition of talent through awards such as the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award.
In 2022, the BBVA Foundation supported 129 scientists, researchers and cultural creators through a range of programs, including Leonardo fellowships. In total in 2022, more than 367,000 people participated in the Foundation's research and arts initiatives and more than 4.6 million accessed high-quality content on its information platforms.
Focal point 4. Volunteering (SDG 17)
Overall, 8,637 BBVA employees participated in volunteer initiatives during 2022 and dedicated more than 24,262 hours (81% during working hours and 19% outside working hours). The time dedicated by employees in 2022 is equivalent to a contribution of €429,044.
BBVA's corporate volunteering initiatives encourage employee collaboration to generate a significant social impact, increase a sense of belonging, satisfaction and productivity, and place BBVA as a leading company in corporate volunteering, which increases its attractiveness to existing and potential employees.
BBVA uses the widely recognized standard Business Investment for Societal Impact (formerly London Benchmarking Group) to measure its contribution to society. This method provides quantitative indicators that aggregate scores and benchmark across participating companies.
BBVA is recognized by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), the world's leading sustainability index, in which BBVA ranks first in the category of banks in Europe.