; ERM Foundation: ERM Sustainability Report 2017

ERM Foundation

About the ERM Foundation

The ERM Foundation supports communities through financial contributions, pro bono time for technical and professional advice for nonprofit entities and social enterprises, and other backing through employee-led initiatives.

Since it formed in 1995, the Foundation has disbursed more than $3.7 million in grants and provided more than 12,000 hours of technical and professional pro bono support to nearly 200 organizations around the globe.

The majority of the Foundation's grant funds come from employee donations and locally organized fundraising events. ERM matches a portion of these contributions. In FY17, we disbursed $500,000 in grants to support 51 projects in 18 countries and territories.

ERM Foundation project countries and territories FY17*

  • Africa: Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Uganda
  • Asia: China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Philippines
  • Australasia: Australia
  • North and Central America: Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, United States
  • South America: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia
  • Europe: Italy, Romania, Spain, United Kingdom

* Includes projects that received pro bono support and/or grant funding

Download The ERM Foundation 2017 Annual Review 2017

© Joanna Pinneo, Ripple Effect Images, Solar Sister

Regional flagship projects

The ERM Foundation operates a “flagship” project in each of our regions. These longer-term partnerships are undertaken with selected nonprofit organizations:

  • In the Europe, Middle East, and Africa and North America regions, we are working on projects that harness data and technology to address conservation challenges.
  • Employees in the Latin America and Caribbean Region are leading a community-based initiative that improves access to clean water and sanitation education.
  • In the Asia Pacific Region, we are supporting an initiative that is improving access to energy-efficient, smoke-free cooking stoves for off-grid communities in Myanmar.

ERM Foundation focus areas and the Sustainable Development Goals

Through the ERM Foundation's projects, employees can lend practical and technical support to many organizations and social enterprises that otherwise would not benefit from the breadth of ERM's expertise. We align our Foundation activities with the SDGs, in ways that make effective use of the professional skills and interests of ERM employees globally.

Conservation and biodiversity

Empowering women and girls

Environmental education

Low-carbon development

Water, sanitation and hygiene

One of ERM’s targets for FY17 was to measure the contribution to the SDGs of ERM Foundation activities. The ERM Foundation looks at each project’s inputs (i.e., grant funding and/or professional pro bono support) and outcomes in the context of the SDGs. Upon completion of projects, teams submit a report including information on the social, environmental and economic benefits that are delivered though our investments.

During FY17, the ERM Foundation increased its emphasis on projects that have a strong focus on empowering women and girls. For example, this year the Foundation supported:

  • Women for Women International, which works with women in post-conflict countries, providing the training and support they need to rebuild their lives after years of war.
  • Africa Development Promise, which provides women-led agricultural cooperatives in Rwanda and Uganda with the investment and training required to transition from subsistence farming to small well-run, profitable agribusinesses.

  • FY17 targets

    1% of prior year profits contributed to global sustainability initiatives, primarily through the ERM Foundation


    ERM contributed 1% of prior year profits (more than $1 million) to global sustainability initiatives

  • Measure the contribution to the SDGs of ERM Foundation activities

    New reporting requirements now capture each project’s inputs (i.e., grant funding and/or professional pro bono support) and outcomes in the context of the SDGs.

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