UBS Optimus Foundation: Grants for Global Health

OVERVIEW: The UBS Optimus Foundation's global health giving is directed toward vulnerable children, focusing on maternal and newborn health, child care, and community health.

IP TAKE: UBS takes chance on innovative approaches to improving the health of vulnerable children around the world; however, it requires proposals be well-researched and detail potential impact. It does not fund projects that strictly deliver healthcare services. 

PROFILE: The UBS Optimus Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the global financial services company UBS AG. Established in 1999, the foundation focuses on ensuring that children in developing countries have the opportunity to grow up in a safe environment, attend school and live healthy lives. Grantmaking programs include Child Health, Education, Protection and Emergency Response. 

The foundation's Child Health program focuses on efforts to decrease the number of children who die every year from both preventable and infectious diseases. While this is obviously a broad goal, the foundation's own research has identified three key areas of focus in its global health giving: newborn health, child care, and community health. UBS also supports organizations that improve the mortality rates of mothers and newborns. 

UBS grants range from CHF 80,000 to CHF 150,000 (roughly about $84,000 to $157,000). Grant terms typically last from 12 to 18 months. This foundation largely supports large organizations that try to achieve widespread change on an international level, such as Médecins Sans Frontières and the International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research. It also generously supports smaller groups that seek to make positive impacts on children’s health on a local level, such as Last Mile Health and Living Goods.

To learn more about the types of organizations receiving support from the UBS Optimus Foundation, explore its projects list.

The UBS only accepts grant applications during its open calls, which are announced each year. Those announcements don’t seem to follow any pattern or deadline, so grantees should check the foundation’s grant application page or those upcoming dates.


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