Teck Resources has announced the creation of a $20-million fund on Thursday to support social initiatives and increased healthcare capacity in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the procurement and donation of 1-million masks for B.C. healthcare workers.
“The global health crisis posed by COVID-19 is unlike anything previously faced by companies, by families, and by communities. The scope and severity of this pandemic requires all of us to step up and do our part,” said Don Lindsay, President and CEO of Teck Resources. “We have created a $20-million fund that will provide direct support to critical services in communities where we operate. This includes procuring essential medical supplies, donating to medical research, supporting local healthcare and social services affected by COVID-19, and contributing to international relief efforts.”
Linsday said the funding will help protect the health and wellbeing of local and global communities while supporting their long-term economic and social recovery.
“Teck and its people are proud to play our part. There are many examples of our local operations embodying that same spirit, such as donating PPE to local frontline health workers, sharing their health and safety expertise with the community, and providing funding to local food banks,” added Lindsay. “The collective response to this unprecedented threat has been truly extraordinary. It should give us every confidence that we will prevail and once it passes, as it surely will, we will all emerge stronger and more resilient than ever.”
Through the fund, Teck said the following donations have been made to-date:
- One million masks for healthcare in British Columbia: Working in collaboration with government agencies and utilizing its supply chain network, Teck has procured 1 million KN95 masks to donate to B.C.’s healthcare system with delivery expected in the coming weeks.
- Contributions to Canadian relief efforts: Teck is providing $250,000 to the Canadian Red Cross towards supporting health services and public health in the battle against COVID-19, including the deployment of the Red Cross’s Emergency Response Unit field hospital and the supply of medical equipment.
- Support for medical research programs in Canada: Teck has provided a $250,000 contribution to the VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation for targeted drug discovery into therapeutic solutions to the COVID-19 virus carried out at the Vancouver Prostate Centre.
- Teck Community Response Fund for local communities in Canada, Alaska and Chile: A dedicated community investment fund will support local organizations in areas where Teck operates directly involved with COVID-19 response (such as healthcare and social services) or those directly experiencing impacts resulting from COVID-19. A portion of this fund will be specifically dedicated to support for Indigenous communities. Teck is also expediting payments to local and Indigenous suppliers to support their ongoing economic resiliency.
- Healthcare services in Chile: Teck will support healthcare services in the Tarapaca and Coquimbo regions of Chile, including funding medical supplies, equipment, facilities and professionals at the Iquique hospital; family and primary health services in Pica, Pozo Almonte, and Chanavayita; and healthcare services in La Serena.
- Support for international relief efforts: Teck has contributed to international aid efforts including $500,000 to UNICEF (in collaboration with the World Health Organization Solidarity Response Fund) to provide critical medical and sanitation supplies, equipment and training in over 180 countries, and $250,000 to the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation to support children in rural communities in China.
- Investments in use of copper towards infection prevention initiatives: Through its Copper & Health program, Teck will continue to collaborate with public agencies and is making an additional $1 million available to advance the use of copper products to support infection control and prevention.
Teck said additional donations through the $20-million support fund will include the procurement of additional supplies or PPE for community use and health care workers. Other donations will include contributions to medical research, global relief efforts, and long-term economic recovery following the COVID-19 outbreak.