Sun Life donated more than $10 million last year

By Andrew Rickard | June 06 2016 09:34AM

The Sun Life Building in downtown Montreal.

Sun Life has released its public accountability statement for 2015. It reveals that the insurer donated more than $10 million to various charitable causes last year, and about $8 million of that amount went to organisations in Canada.

The report, which was released on May 26, shows that 54% of the insurer’s donations were allocated to health-related causes, while 26% was distributed to arts and culture endeavors, 14% to social services, and 6% to educational initiatives. Sun Life has been particularly active in promoting diabetes awareness, prevention, care and research: since 2012 it has committed more than $13 million to the cause.

Employees and advisors

Sun Life employees and advisors played an important part in generating these charitable funds. Through its matching gifts program, the insurer matches employee donations to a registered charitable organization dollar-for-dollar, up to $500. In total, employees gave $429,113, which generated corporate matching dollars of $358,500. The insurer also has a Teams for Health program that is designed to support employees and advisors who participate in health-related charitable fundraising events; 2,633 people participated in this program, and they generated $237,319 in grant money for various causes.

Besides giving to Canadian communities, Sun Life also contributed a significant amount to government coffers. "In 2015, in all jurisdictions where we operate, taxes paid or payable to governments totaled $1,043 million. Of this total, $428 million was paid or payable in income taxes; $264 million in premium taxes and investment income taxes; and $351 million in excise, property, payroll and other taxes," reads the report. "In Canada, our total tax paid or payable amounted to $477 million."