Community wellness

Leading change for a healthier and more equitable society

We’re not just donating. We’re striving to make a real difference, especially in our signature area: diabetes. We harness the full breadth of our resources, including our people and expertise, to generate a positive impact.

Our approach

Sun Life has a long-standing focus on community health and wellness. We invest in initiatives and partnerships that encourage healthy and active living.

Ensuring wellness opportunities are inclusive and accessible to everyone is important to Sun Life. We have recently evolved our giving program to place a bigger focus on advancing inclusion through our community work. Recent events over the past two years – including the COVID-19 pandemic, the Black Lives Matter movement and historical injustices faced by Canada’s Indigenous Peoples – have amplified the need to focus on society’s most pressing challenges. As a Purpose-driven company, we are directing our efforts towards creating more inclusive and healthier communities.

We aim to play a greater role in addressing health barriers and challenges facing disadvantaged or marginalized communities. We took meaningful steps this past year. For example, of our Canadian philanthropic budget, we committed to spend a minimum of 5% annually to support Indigenous initiatives, and 3% annually to support Black-led initiatives. Refer to our Sustainability Report for more details on the initiatives we supported.

Diabetes is a global epidemic which affects over 537 million adults worldwide1. That’s why Sun Life has committed to slow the advance of diabetes and its related complications. Our main focus is the prevention of type 2 diabetes.

Since we announced our commitment in 2012, we have contributed nearly $43 million to the cause globally. Examples of our support include Canada’s Children’s Hospital Foundations, the Team Up Against Diabetes grant program in the U.S., and Sun Life Malaysia’s Brighter You program. Learn more about why diabetes is our priority cause.

In addition to our focus on diabetes prevention, Sun Life is also deeply committed to improving mental health and well-being. The global pandemic further underscored the importance of investing in mental health support and resources. Our employees, our Clients, and people from underserved communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19 all benefit from these investments. 

Sun Life employees and advisors generously volunteer, donate to, and participate in causes that they are passionate about. These include initiatives that contribute to the health and well-being of communities.

Sun Life supports employees’ community work, tailored to locally relevant health causes within each of our markets. In North America, for example, our You Give We Give program provides donation matching when employees contribute their time or money to registered charitable organizations. 

2021 highlights

  • $20.9 million in corporate giving2, towards health, culture, social services and education around the world
  • $42.7 million directed to the fight against diabetes globally since 2012

Learn more about our progress and performance in our 2021 Sustainability Report and ESG Performance Tables.

Meet the recipients of the Sun Life Team Up Against Diabetes grant program

Sun Life annually awards grants to organizations around the U.S. that help improve people's health and serve those living with or at-risk for diabetes.

Learn more

1 International Diabetes Federation. “IDF Diabetes Atlas 10th edition”. 2021.

Refer to Sustainability Data Scope - Note 3.