Engineering Impact: Philanthropy

Excerpts from the 2021 Medtronic Integrated Performance Report
Dec 3, 2021 2:15 PM ET

Engineering impact: Philanthropy

Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation partner to improve lives and address inequities. Our philanthropic activities build trust and social capital with local, national, and international organizations, and we leverage the power of our human capital through employee volunteering and giving.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and social justice movement continue to bring to light societal inequities and disparities in care. For Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation, FY21 was a year of responsive philanthropic action and investment in underserved communities and healthcare systems through fund deployment, volunteerism, and bold leadership to drive measurable results.

In FY21, Medtronic Foundation partnered with over 65 nonprofits globally. More than 50% of those organizations have diverse leadership, reflecting communities they serve. Local impact through diverse-led organizations drives sustainable, meaningful social impact across areas such as COVID-19 relief, education, and social justice.

Our Mission to alleviate pain, restore health, and extend life drives our philanthropic partnerships and activities. Together, Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation work to improve lives of underserved populations by expanding economic opportunities, improving access to vital treatment, and building fairer healthcare systems and communities.

Our contributions

In FY21, Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation contributed more than $103 million in combined philanthropic investments.

  • Cash contributions. Funding medical professionals and fellowship positions, clinical research grants, third-party sponsored health education programs, and other health-related activities
  • Medtronic Foundation grants. Improving the health of underserved populations worldwide and supporting communities where Medtronic employees live and give
  • Product donations. Supporting disaster recovery efforts with product donations distributed to nonprofit organizations and in-country clinics
  • Year-round employee volunteering opportunities. Giving time, skills, and resources to our communities

Advancing equity through philanthropy

Philanthropy can be a powerful lever for change. We have focused investment on activities that advance social justice and reduce inequities in healthcare systems and communities where we operate.

In FY21, the Medtronic Foundation committed $16 million to health and education partnerships to address racial disparities and advance social justice in Black communities in the United States. These include a national partnership with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, as well as local partnerships with the Northside Achievement Zone and People’s Center Clinics & Services in Minneapolis.

These partnerships combine employee skills and a passion for giving back with financial support. Investment in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education, in particular, can help to advance more equitable economic opportunities for underserved and underrepresented populations.

Pandemic support for communities

In FY21, we continued to support communities and healthcare systems impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. We increased our support for organizations with diverse leadership that reflect the communities the organizations serve.

  • Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation partnered to provide emergency food assistance and hunger relief programs, mental health support, health worker grants, organization operational support, and donations of in-kind personal protective equipment (PPE).
  • Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation focused on underserved communities and those disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, such as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color
  • communities in the United States, and countries that experienced explosive surges of COVID-19, such as Brazil and India.
  • Medtronic product donations included a range of solutions to support patients with severe respiratory illness, those undergoing cardiopulmonary bypass surgery, and those receiving dialysis treatment.
  • The Medtronic Foundation continued to invest in and empower community health workers to assist with the COVID-19 pandemic response, including equitable access to vaccines.

Medtronic Foundation programs

The Medtronic Foundation builds strategic relationships with local and national partners, leveraging a mix of resources to support meaningful health outcomes.

Combining grant partnerships with strategic advice and skills-based employee volunteering helps deliver long-term change in a way that one-off interventions cannot. The Medtronic Foundation funds a range of programs to invest in healthcare systems and workers. These include global health programs, as well as new patient-centered programs for the management of chronic conditions in primary care in three U.S. states and in India, Bangladesh, South Africa, Kenya, and Uganda.

In FY21, the Medtronic Foundation’s strategic chronic care, acute care, and health equity partners trained 1,700 health workers and served a total of 12,500 patients — 70% of whom saw clinically meaningful improvements in health outcomes.

In FY21, all Medtronic Foundation partners adapted their care models throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, health workers at the BRAC organization in Bangladesh and the Karnataka Health Promotion Trust (KHPT) blended virtual and in-person offerings. Through our skills-based partnership program, Global Innovation Fellows, Medtronic employees helped KHPT develop digital health tools for community health workers and link patients to primary care.

In FY22, the Medtronic Foundation will continue to deliver equitable outcomes and impact for underserved communities with a focus on:

  • Deepening its philanthropic presences in key communities with a demonstrated need and where Medtronic has a large footprint
  • Empowering and engaging Medtronic employees to be agents of change
  • Ensuring a diverse mix of nonprofit partners that represent the community we aim to serve and helping them deliver and sustain community improvements

Employee volunteering

The Medtronic Foundation helps our employees volunteer and give to their communities. The online shift of activities due to COVID-19 meant fewer volunteers and volunteer projects in FY21.

Project 6 is our annual volunteering kickoff that encourages 365 days of giving to causes that mean the most to our employees. The Medtronic Foundation offers a variety of year-round opportunities to help employees; they can visit a dedicated online portal to match their skills to available opportunities.

We also offered two new volunteering options for FY21:

  • Community impact champions. The champions are volunteer leaders trained by the Medtronic Foundation to use storytelling to engage fellow employees in volunteering activities. More than 379 employees in 44 countries volunteered for training in FY21.
  • Volunteer power hours. Employees may give an hour of time from anywhere in the world because we believe simple actions make a difference. For example, our employees participated in Power Hours organized by the Medtronic Foundation to support social justice organizations such as Amnesty International, the American Civil Liberties Union, and many others. More than 2,700 employees from 44 countries logged more than 4,000 volunteer hours in just one day.

In addition, the Medtronic Foundation offers:

  • Matched giving. The Medtronic Foundation matches employee and retiree donations made to any eligible nonprofit; up to $5,000 per calendar year.
  • Volunteer grants. A revamped program enables employees to volunteer with eligible nonprofits to earn money for causes important to them. For every 10 volunteer hours, employees can earn $200 (up to 50 hours, $20 per volunteer hour, maximum amount $1,000 per calendar year).
  • Skilled service. The Medtronic Foundation curates skills-based volunteerism through programs like the Global Innovation Fellows, virtual consulting, cross corporate challenges, and a program pilot that helps employees develop and implement skills-based projects with local community organizations. In FY21, the Medtronic Foundation engaged 210 employees to implement 20 skills-based volunteer projects with 32 international organizations across 10 countries.

Disaster response

The COVID-19 pandemic has been the focus of our disaster-response efforts over the past year. Alongside supporting efforts to address this global challenge, we continue to respond to other issues like natural disasters and extreme weather that impact the health of communities around the world.

Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation build long-term partnerships with local and global organizations that can aid in recovery. The Medtronic Foundation works with organizations to identify suppliers, build staff capacity, and distribute grants to enable timely, strategic response to disasters.

Medtronic employees can take five days of paid time off each year to support relief and recovery efforts by volunteering with nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations. When employees’ own communities are impacted, the Medtronic Employee Emergency Assistance Fund offers financial support.

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