15. mBank and social corporate responsibility

15.1. mBank Foundation

15-1-mfundacjamBank Foundation (mFoundation), which is an expression of the social involvement of mBank, was established in 1994 as one of the first corporate foundations in the banking sector. The mission of mFoundation is to act in support of enhancing education and quality of life of the society through actions coherent with the image and policy of the Bank.

In 2014 mFoundation celebrated its 20th anniversary, previously operating as BRE Bank Foundation. The name and the strategy of the Foundation changed in the wake of the Bank’s rebranding. mFoundation set a new aim for itself which is included in the strategy for 2012-2016 under the name “m like mathematics” (“m jak matemetyka”). The new strategy focuses on mathematics education. mBank is convinced that, thanks to the new strategy of the Foundation, it will contribute to the development of mathematical skills of young Poles. Recognising that mathematics is the basis of logical thinking, the Foundation wants to develop and stimulate mathematical reasoning as well as prove that the ability to calculate effectively is interesting and necessary in everyday life.

The new strategy was implemented in three main forms: subsidies, the “mPower” (“mPotęga”) grant programme and the “Masters of mathematics” (“Mistrzowie matematyki”) scholarships. The beneficiaries of the programmes were children, teenagers, their parents and teachers as well as schools, non-governmental organisations and institutes of higher education which make efforts to spread mathematical knowledge in an unconventional and inspiring manner.

Apart from implementing its regular programmes, mFoundation was also engaged in supporting the employee volunteering programme and social activities undertaken by the Bank’s employees.

Moreover, in 2014 mFoundation initiated and was a partner of the campaign “Mathematics counts” (“Matematyka się liczy”) in the pages of a daily newspaper “Gazeta Wyborcza”. Debates with experts, competitions for students and teachers as well as a mathematical picnic with workshops for children and lectures for parents and teachers concerning modern and effective mathematics education were organised as part of the campaign.

An amount of PLN 2,250 thousand was dedicated for the performance of the statutory tasks of mFoundation in 2014 with the following structure of expenses:

Actions in support of mathematics education

The subsidies programme

Through this programme mFoundation provides one-time financial support to development projects regarding mathematics and the related-to-mathematics education. Applications for subsidies are accepted throughout the whole year and they are processed once a month. Non-governmental organisations, educational establishments and higher education institutions may apply for the support. The subsidised projects benefited almost 60 thousand direct recipients. The funds of mFoundation enabled the development of 22 diverse projects of nation- and region-wide scopes, among others: the Competition of Secondary School Pupils in Mathematics, the international photographic competition “Mathematics through the lens”, mathematical workshops “Mathematics for nippers” for pre-school children from Babice municipality or the project “Education through chess in school” promoting the royal game as a tool helping to develop mathematical competencies in 250 Polish schools.

Moreover, mathematical talents are supported financially through:

  • The grant programme “mPower”, which is aimed at developing mathematical skills of the young generation by inspiring teachers, parents, people with passion for mathematics to look for creative, attractive ways for children and teenagers to get to know the world of numbers. The programme is being implemented in cooperation with the Good Network Foundation (Fundacja Dobra Sieć). In 2014, in the first edition of “mPower”, schools, social organisations, cultural centres and public libraries in the Masovian and Łódź Voivodeships could apply for grants. Activities performed thanks to the grants of “mPower” benefited 5.5 thousand direct recipients.
  • The scholarship programme “Masters of mathematics”, which consists of granting scholarships to primary, secondary, high school and university students with exceptional talents for science, such as mathematics. Thanks to the programme children from different backgrounds interested in mathematics or with above-average academic performance have a chance to pursue further education. In 2014 the Foundation supported the education of 68 scholarship holders.

The employee volunteering programme

mFoundation helped mBank’s employees to take actions for local communities through the support of the employee volunteering programme “Let’s Do Good Together” (“Zróbmy razem coś dobrego”), of the sports volunteering programme “Let’s Run Together for Others” (“Biegnijmy razem dla innych”) and through the development of the skills volunteering programme.

In 2014, 21 projects were co-financed by mFoundation within the employee volunteering programme “Let’s Do Good Together” and were implemented by 160 volunteers – the Bank’s employees together with their families and friends.

Moreover, the Foundation supported selected social activities initiated by the Bank's employees.

Cooperation with the CASE Foundation

Since 2005 mFoundation has been cooperating with the Science Foundation CASE (Center for Social and Economic Research), co-organising cyclical seminars and issuing accompanying publications. CASE is a non-profit,  international, independent research and advisory centre, focusing on the transformation in Central and Eastern Europe, Transcaucasia and Central Asia, the European integration and the world economy. The seminars cover the key issues of the financial sector, public finances, the monetary union and other current, important questions relating to the economic policy in Poland and in the world. There were 6 seminars organised within the scope of the cooperation in 2014.

In 2015, mFoundation will continue the implementation of the “m like mathematics” strategy by developing the existing projects and initiating new ones.

15.2. Other social – oriented activities

"Tomorrow Belongs to Women"

Since 2008 mBank organises “Tomorrow Belongs to Women" support programme addressed to all female corporate clients of mBank, managing finances, sitting on management boards or owning enterprises. As part of the project, the Bank organises meetings with experts, networking discussions and other activities making it easier for working women to achieve the work-life balance. The key themes of the meetings were selected based on suggestions from working women given in an Internet questionnaire.

In 2014 3 meetings in the area of “Tomorrow Belongs to Women” initiative took place.