The Z Zurich Foundation, a charitable foundation established by members of the Zurich Insurance Group, has contributed initial funding of $500,000 to the North America Climate Resilience Program, which is designed to strengthen climate resilience and help address social inequities in vulnerable communities.
The initial donation is part of a multi-year commitment to the program, Zurich said. The program will initially focus on protecting vulnerable communities in five US cities.
Zurich North America will help administer the program with Resilient Cities (R-Cities), which will identify neighborhoods, convene community and government partners, and utilize its Resilient Community Impact Fund (RCIFund) to catalyze direct investment into projects. R-Cities has more than 10 years of urban resilience experience and a strong connection to cities through its network of chief resilience officers (CROs).
“The RCIFund is an important tool to gather the much-needed resources to finance projects on the ground in these communities,” said Gregory Renand, head of the Z Zurich Foundation. “Real success, however, will depend on additional investments from like-minded peers, which is why we’re calling upon others to join us to create more climate-resilient communities and address social inequity.”
The RCIFund is seeking minimum donor contributions of $250,000 to any pool or sub-fund. The donations could be dedicated to up to five projects in any R-Cities member city that has a resilience strategy and a CRO, Zurich said.
“We are calling investors interested in the long-term economic vitality and resilience of urban places to join us in this important effort,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, chair of the Resilient Cities Network board. “The Z Zurich Foundation has taken a bold step in committing to support urban infrastructure that delivers toward climate and social equity goals. Cities have these types of projects ready to go; it’s now on funders to come to the table.”
More information can be found on the Resilient Cities Network website.