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Unilever Foundation supports Ebola response


The Unilever Foundation has been working with its partners, Population Services International (PSI), Save the Children and UNICEF to support their on-the-ground response to the Ebola outbreak.

Unilever sign in Mexico

Promoting good hygiene

With no known cure or vaccine, prevention is the most powerful tool we have against Ebola. In Liberia and Nigeria (which was recently declared Ebola-free), the Foundation is backing government campaigns to help promote good hygiene practices – in particular handwashing with soap. So far Unilever has donated 1.5 million bars to be distributed in communities at risk via our partners, PSI and Save the Children.

Unilever is also part of a UNICEF-led coalition, which is providing further support to the government of Liberia. Unilever will donate soap and laundry detergent to UNICEF for them to use in their work with local communities.

With the Foundation’s support, our partners are continuing to make progress on the ground:

  • PSI will distribute 750,000 bars of Lifebuoy soap to communities in need throughout the country. 150,000 of these bars will be included in 50,000 UNICEF household kits, and PSI will work with the government of Liberia to distribute the other 600,000 to county-level health centres. PSI has also leveraged its behaviour change expertise to launch a health education campaign with partners to reach 2 million people throughout the country.
  • Through both cash and product donations, we are supporting Save the Children’s effort to stop the spread and save lives in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. In Nigeria, Unilever has enabled Save the Children to continue Ebola prevention work through promoting hand washing and good hygiene habits to over 130,000 school children, teachers, mothers and health workers.
  • UNICEF will also distribute soap across Liberia, along with information to help keep children and families protected from the disease. Laundry detergent will be donated for distribution at community care centres.

Working together to control Ebola

Unilever is also sharing its behaviour change expertise. We ran a behaviour change workshop with DFID – the UK Department for International Development – to share our knowledge on mass-scale behaviour change campaigns.

Elsewhere our supply chain and logistics teams at both global and local levels are providing expertise to ensure the products get to the partners where and when they need them.

Paul Polman says: “The response to the Ebola crisis is another great example of how the Unilever Foundation can make a difference in times of emergency. Working together with our global partners, we are able to mobilise our joint resources to help those who need it most.”

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