Corporate social investment

Corporate social investment

Creating partnerships to build resilient communities

Safe and well-maintained communities remain a key challenge for all South Africans. The lack of both infrastructure and resources are factors that continue to expose vulnerable communities to economic and social hardship. The lack of adequate safety and security-related services in these communities prevent communities from breaking the cycle of poverty and socio-economic hardship. For this reason, we are committed to creating a stable and prosperous society – one that ensures a successful country with markets full of potential. The importance of our selected programmes addresses key social risks, such as increased levels of violence and substance abuse, as these are the real issues many communities currently face and which ultimately affect children.

We have always recognised the potential of young people and continue to support the realisation thereof through our corporate social investment (CSI) programmes. Our CSI strategy’s core focus is on youth, which is aligned with our company strategy and our approach to prioritise developmental work. By focusing our CSI strategy on safe and secure community schools and breaking the cycles of violence and crime, we hope to support the long-term interest of society as well as our own core business of insurance.

During 2016, we launched a safety ideas initiative. The campaign invited submission of safety ideas and concepts for the public with the winning concepts going through an incubation process for further development into prototypes to further stand the chance of being turned into viable businesses. This initiative strengthens our association with safety and risk management, creates opportunities for enterprise development and investment [link to real life story Innovative platforms to inspire entrepreneurs], and ultimately supports our commitment to manage the risk pool and reduce systemic risk.

In 2016, we invested R21 million in CSI projects, including consumer financial education, with the majority allocated to environmental and development programmes. Our focus areas include:

  1. Drive community risk awareness through partnerships to address the drivers of risk and inculcate appropriate risk response behaviour
  2. Partner with appropriate entities to increase capacity for disaster response and relief in vulnerable communities
  3. Assist with the improvement of technology to enable communities to use early warning systems to drive proactive risk management behaviour
  4. Address the causes of fire risks in communities by providing safer alternatives, for example replacing candles with solar candles, heat and smoke sensors, etc
  5. Where appropriate, assist neighbourhood watches with necessary equipment to improve service to communities
  6. Focus on hotspots in the high-risk communities and address high-risk activities through partnerships and programmes, for example eradication of alien vegetation projects for job creation purposes, firebreaks, etc. 

Emthunzini BBBEE Community Trust

The Santam BBBEE scheme, established in 2007, transferred 10% of its shares to a broad consortium, which consisted of three components:

  • The Emthunzini Black Economic Empowerment Staff Trust (the Staff Trust)
  • The Emthunzini Black Economic Empowerment Business Partners Trust (the Business Partners Trust)
  • The Emthunzini Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment Community Trust (the Community Trust)

The scheme matured in February 2015, at which time the Community Trust received Santam shares and cash to the value of R275 million.

Since its establishment, the Community Trust has been an example of responsible giving put into good practice. It has contributed to a wide range of outcomes at community and organisational level (for grantees).

In 2015, the Community Trust invested in sustainability and advancement capacity building. Investment in each organisation in terms of monitoring and evaluation mentoring has resulted in beneficiary organisations:

  • being clearer in terms of their strategy and operations;
  • being able to measure how they are doing and produce evidence;
  • having an outcomes focus; and
  • beginning to have a learning focus.

Santam’s CSI team provides administrative support to the Community Trust, managing grant applications and monitoring the progress of funded projects.

Santam Child Art

Art is a highly valuable, but often neglected, aspect of human development. While Arts and Culture is a part of the formal curriculum for primary school age children in South Africa, in many schools in disadvantaged areas the subject is not offered, or is heavily under-resourced. In fact, research has shown that most Arts and Culture educators in these areas have not received formal training in the subject.

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Staff Volunteerism

The Santam Staff Volunteerism programme was initiated in 2009 as a way of encouraging Santam employees to become more involved in their communities. The programme allows employees to make direct voluntary contributions to projects and causes they care about, through both monetary and non-monetary means. This helps our employees to feel they are contributing to communities they care about, and it aligns with Santam’s corporate social investment vision of contributing towards real, meaningful and sustainable community development in South Africa.

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Contact us for information, or to get involved

Tersia Mdunge

CSI Manager

Cherie Josephs

CSI Coordinator


Submit your project proposal

We recommend that you submit your request for funding at least four months prior to the anticipated project starting date. Submit your project proposal in either hard copy or electronic format as follow:


Hard copy

Corporate Social Investment Department
P.O BOX 3881
Tyger Valley