UBS Optimus Foundation

Impactful philanthropy – we deliver breakthrough solutions to pressing social and environmental issues.

Meet the winners!

We are pleased to award the COVID-19 Relief Grant Prize to Healthy Learners and Young 1ove. The over $1.5 million prize will support their efforts in health and education, areas in which they have each shown outstanding innovation and commitment to supporting those most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Each organization will receive funds to scale their approaches which have been proven to improve child health and learning outcomes, even in the context of COVID-19-related school closures and disruptions to routine health services.

Healthy Learners

Healthy Learners is enabling schools to reopen safely and improving child health in Zambia. They trains teachers to become school health workers who ensure timely diagnosis and treatment for school-aged children—a population often neglected by current health interventions—reducing sickness and absenteeism. During COVID, Healthy Learners scaled its model to all 105 public primary schools in Zambia’s capital city of Lusaka, serving a total of 250,000 children. With the COVID Prize funding, Healthy Learners will reach 600,000 children across 500 schools by supporting government to sustain the model in all public primary schools in the Lusaka district and by expanding to the Copperbelt province.

Young 1ove

Young 1ove is delivering educational instruction via SMS and phone calls to mitigate the fallout of the pandemic on education and improve numeracy amongst children during COVID-19 school closures in Botswana. Children in grades 3-5 receive SMS messages with a math-based ‘problem of the week’ whereas phone calls from instructors provided an instructional walk-through of learning activities sent through the SMS. With support of the COVID Prize, Young 1ove will replicate its work from Botswana in up to five developing countries and reach over 10,000 families. Young 1ove will also leverage the results of the research to influence global education policy and build a path to scale for low-tech interventions.

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How we are partnering for good

Find a selection of partners we work with to achieve powerful results. From getting more girls into school to fighting child trafficking and tackling climate change.

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