Supporting our communities
As the UK’s leading rural insurer, we’re in a unique position to understand the issues affecting our members and their communities. We care about their health and wellbeing, and work hard to protect their livelihoods.
Find out about some our initiatives that support our communities:
Agency Giving Fund
The Agency Giving Fund is a national fund to support local charities and was first set up in 2020 in response to the pandemic – to provide emergency support and assist with recovery.
To ensure funding is distributed across the UK, and to where it matters most, NFU Mutual invites all local agency and branch offices to nominate local charities. Their local knowledge directs the funding to where it matters most.
The Agency Giving Fund has helped support a wide range of charities, from providing food parcels, to supporting local hospices and mental health support groups, the Fund helps champion services that play a vital role for our members and their communities.
NFU Mutual Charitable Trust
Established in 1998, the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust promotes and supports national and regional charitable causes in agriculture and rural development in the UK.
Since it was founded, the Trust has distributed donations totalling over £7m and made a positive difference to education, research, social welfare and poverty relief. Over £3m of that funding has been pledged since 2020, following enhanced donations from NFU Mutual to support charities and communities during difficult times. In March 2022, the Trust also made a special donation of £150,000 to the Disasters Emergency Committee Ukraine Appeal, to support those who have been affected by the conflict.
Community Champions Scheme
The Community Champions Scheme was a newly launched scheme in 2022 to support staff fundraising activities and causes close to key office sites, including Stratford upon Avon and our regional service centres across the UK. £30,000 was distributed through this fund during 2022.
One of the initiatives funded through the scheme was a new partnership with national environmental charity, The Tree Council, to support their nature and conservation work in UK neighbourhoods. In July 2022, we were proud to announce that NFU Mutual had joined forces with The Tree Council, as a Jubilee Partner for The Queen’s Green Canopy.
NFU Mutual Centenary Award
Photography: Phil Morley
We first launched the annual NFU Mutual Centenary Award in 2010 to celebrate our 100th year. It aims to support innovation and research in UK agriculture whilst also championing passionate individuals who demonstrate potential to make an impact in the industry. The award is funded by the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust and provides bursaries of up to 75% of course fees for selected postgraduate students in agriculture.
Forty-nine young people have since received help through the award to further their education.
Farm Safety Foundation
As a Mutual insurer that has cared about the countryside, farmers and their families for over a century, NFU Mutual took the decision in 2014 to establish the Farm Safety Foundation, an independent registered charity to help farmers work safely (Registered Charity No. 1159000).
Agriculture accounts for 1% of the UK’s working population but 18% of all workplace deaths. Twenty-two farm workers and three members of the public (including a 9-year-old child) lost their lives on farms in Great Britain in the past year according to the 2021/2022 HSE Fatal Injuries in Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing GB report.
The Farm Safety Foundation (or Yellow Wellies as many know them) works throughout the UK to preserve and protect both the physical and mental wellbeing of those living and working in the industry.
NFU Mutual’s funding has allowed the charity to develop and deliver farm safety and mental health training to over 20,500 young farmers at 44 land-based colleges/universities throughout the UK and through the Young Farmers’ Clubs network. The team has also created and funded two annual awareness campaigns – Farm Safety Week and Mind Your Head, and continues to work closely with partners and stakeholders nationally and internationally. Raising awareness of farm safety and poor mental health is a key objective, in order to drive a reduction in the number of injuries and fatalities that continue to give agriculture the poorest record of any occupation in the UK.
We understand that charities and organisations working to provide valuable support to our communities often need a helping hand. That’s why, in addition to our charitable giving, we’re proud to support causes across the UK through the fantastic efforts of our people. NFU Mutual staff dedicated over 2,200 hours to support community causes through our employee volunteering programme in 2022, from foodbanks and support groups to rural organisations and efforts to conserve nature and biodiversity.
We hold strong relationships with charities and local groups UK-wide and we are always exploring new opportunities for our employees to give support and get involved. To help us to deliver on our commitment to champion community support, we will be expanding our employee volunteering programme in 2023.
Case study: our volunteering in action
It was fantastic to have the team from NFU Mutual volunteer at our Riding for the Disabled site in Glasgow. We’re short of helpers at the moment and it’s days like this that allow us to get all the general upkeep done. The group have helped make sure everything is clean and in working order for our riders and we’re enormously grateful for their hard work.” Lynda McKeeman, Riding for the Disabled in Glasgow
“We’d like to say a massive thank you to the NFU Mutual team who got out and about to help us in the Heart of England Forest, helping to clear plastic tree guards from trees planted over ten years ago. It’s really important that groups come out and help us with our work.” Jonathan Saunders, The Heart of England Forest