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Transforming the lives of children through innovative projects around the world.
Unilever Partnership

In partnership with GIZ, Symrise and Wall’s, one of Unilever’s leading ice cream brands, we’re working with children and families in Madagascar, so that they can overcome the challenges they face, and advocate for their rights. 

We’re supporting the health and nutrition of children and mothers in Indonesia with Lifebuoy, Unilever’s hygienic soap brand. 

And we are also providing families with hygiene education and supplies to reduce the risk of COVID-19 in nine countries with support from the Hygiene Behaviour Change Coalition (HBCC), established by Unilever and the UK Government’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office in 2020. 

Vanilla for Change

Unilever, GIZ, Wall's and Symrise

Since 2016, Wall’s has been working with global child rights organisation Save the Children, government development agency GIZ, and value chain partner Symrise, to improve the lives of vanilla farming communities in the Sava region of Madagascar, known as the ‘Vanilla Belt’ of the country, and ensure the children growing up there can go on to build a better future. 

By combining over 100 years of Save the Children’s child protection expertise with GIZ’s sustainable development expertise and Wall’s and Symrise’s experience of the vanilla supply chain, the four organisations have developed a unique and ground-breaking programme which goes beyond the supply chain and empowers some of the most vulnerable children and families in Madagascar, whilst building a sustainable supply of vanilla for the future. 

The Vanilla for Change programme has already made a difference to the lives of more than 60,000 people, with incredible achievements including: 

  •     5,764 vulnerable households were provided with health insurance 
  •     1,253 people were provided with small livelihoods grants, helping them to provide for their families 
  •     54,684 people received our Essential Package, which empowered parents to make strong decisions about health, nutrition, and hygiene for their children 
  •     663 young people improved their numeracy and literacy skills, and a further 1,900 young people improved their life skills and career prospects through the specialist Pathway programme 

Following on from the highly successful first programme phase, we’re delighted to have started on the next phase of our programme from 2020-2024. We are continuing to work in partnership with Unilever, GIZ and Symrise to strengthen vanilla economies, and promote community resilience in vanilla-farming areas in Madagascar, whilst strengthening the opportunities for children in this region.  

We aim to support 52,028 people (including 23,100 young people), to make positive life choices, protect themselves and build better livelihoods.

More information on Vanilla for Change


Unilever Lifebuoy

Lifebuoy, Unilever’s leading soap brand, has invested in the Better Investment for Stunting Alleviation programme in Indonesia alongside The Power of Nutrition. This three-year programme is focused on creating long-term nutrition and hygiene behaviour change by promoting positive handwashing habits among children and mothers. 


We know that getting simple things right in early childhood, such as handwashing, can make a huge difference to a child’s chances and development. Working together, we’re putting this into practice, giving children and their families a far better chance to thrive. 


Lifebuoy has a simple mission: to help parents ensure their children fall ill less often… Lifebuoy was created to save lives and our social mission and business purpose have always been one and the same.”  - Kartik Chandrasekhar, Global Brand Vice President, Lifebuoy 

COVID-19 Response

HBCC, UK AID, Unilever

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way people all over the world think about health and the steps we all need to take to protect ourselves, our families, our communities, and society as a whole. It means, right now, that handwashing and hygiene have never been more topical or important.

Save the Children has been delivering the Hygiene Behaviour Change Coalition (HBCC) programme, established by Unilever and the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth, Development Office (previously Department for International Development), to children and families affected by COVID-19 across 9 countries: Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Sudan, and Yemen.

Our achievements so far include:

  • Reaching over 221 million people in nine countries with messages on COVID-19 awareness and hygiene practices.
  • Distributing over 3 million critical hygiene and sanitation products to 216 Health Facilities and communties, with the aim of promoting positive hygiene behaviours. This includes distributing over 1.6 million bars of soap generously donated by Unilever.
  • We have trained 1,606 Save the Children staff, healthcare workers, community health workers and other implementation staff on COVID-19 infection prevention control and on promoting hygiene practices.

The goal of the programme is to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among children, caregivers, their families, and wider communities, as well as to build resilience to future outbreaks by raising awareness and promoting positive hygiene practices, distributing personal hygiene materials such as soap amongst communities, and supporting the safe transition for children to return to school.


Previously, our partnership focussed on humanitarian response. We worked with communities across the world in the full cycle of disaster response. For example, we collaborated on an award-winning programme in the Philippines on building the capacity of small businesses in Unilever’s value chain to prepare and respond to emergencies. 


In 2012, Unilever made a ground-breaking commitment to Save the Children’s global campaign, EVERYONE. This campaign sought to save millions of lives, by eradicating maternal and child mortality. Together, we reached over 1.4 million women and children with vital healthcare services, trained 8,200 healthcare workers, and created innovative approaches to improving childhood nutrition in Bangladesh. We are proud that we saved lives together, and our partnership continues to flourish across in communities across the world. 


Last updated June 2021.

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