UM’s Third Annual Global Impact Day Goes Virtual

20 July 2020



UM, the global media agency network of IPG Mediabrands, has completed its third global, first-ever virtual Impact Day. Over 100 UM offices across 50 countries closed for the day on July 16th, to give employees the day to volunteer their time and resources with philanthropic organizations worldwide. Originally launched in 2016 under UM’s corporate social responsibility initiative, Better World, the agency’s annual day of service represents its core values of Care and Community. UM employees shared Impact Day content on social media using the hashtags #UMBetterWorld and #UMImpactDay.

“Our Better World team has carefully pivoted Impact Day into a virtual experience to ensure safety for our employees while still empowering them to make an impact in their communities,” said Eileen Kiernan, Global CEO, UM. “Our activities this year are focused around the most relevant issues we are facing as a global community, and we look forward to taking action. With arms virtually locked and eyes forward, we will build a better tomorrow, today,” she continued.

After its US launch in 2016, Impact Day was globalized in 2018 when, over the span of 36 hours and six continents, nearly 5,000 volunteers gathered within their respective communities to restore public gardens, beautify facilities for war veterans, revitalize local parks, protect endangered wildlife, assist elderly residents, pack school bags with supplies for children and more. The Better World platform unites the family of UM offices under a single umbrella to inspire each other, share best practices and create connections across borders that lead to a better world.

This year, UM identified three pillars – People, Pandemic and Planet – as the focal points of all Impact Day activities. The “People” pillar focuses on actions that combat racial injustice and support social equality; activities within the “Pandemic” pillar assisted with COVID-19 relief efforts; and “Planet” pillar activities focused on sustainability and environmental advocacy.

“Impact Day has become an integral part of the DNA at UM, bonding employees to each other, to the agency and to their communities,” said Anthony Hello, Senior Vice President and Better World Global Chair, UM. “

UM employees participated in projects of their own choosing across EMEA, APAC, LATAM and North America, such as:

  • Supporting and promoting Black-owned businesses and mentoring Class of 2020 Black graduates in the U.S.
  • Creating personal hygiene kits for the homeless in Greece
  • Raising money through home exercise for people with disabilities in Mexico
  • Packaging and delivering groceries to the less fortunate in Italy with local NGOs
  • Donating blood to the Thai Red Cross Society in Thailand
  • Walking, cycling or jogging to raise money for COVID-19 relief in Germany
  • Supporting young people of the LGBTQ+ community in association with Le Refuge in France
  • Delivering essential supplies to employees of the Ruijin Hospital in China

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