8 social businesses get £2m from Unilever-DFID-Ernst & Young venture | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 13, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:09 AM, February 13, 2020

8 social businesses get £2m from Unilever-DFID-Ernst & Young venture

Maya is an online platform where any health-related question can be asked anonymously free of charge and without fear of judgment.

To provide round the clock expert advice on physical, mental and lifestyle issues from doctors, psychologists, and beauticians, the platform uses a database of over 25 lakh questions and their repective answers on various topics.

Also available in app form from www.maya.com.bd, Maya is being termed as a personal digital wellbeing assistant by its creators.

Maya is one of 8 innovative 'social business organisations' that received a donation of Tk 22 crore, or £2 million, in the past two years from 'Transform', a joint venture of Unilever, the Department of International Development (DFID) and Ernst & Young.

The initiatives were made public at The Westin Dhaka yesterday.

The eight enterprises are centred on enabling good health and wellbeing, which is also Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3, and clean water and sanitation, or SDG 6. They are 'creating inclusive markets' to 'help alleviate poverty', or SDG 1, and embody partnerships for goals, SDG 17.

Transform is said to be an attempt to further Unilever's 'Sustainable Living Plan', which aims to decouple its growth from environmental footprint while increasing positive social impact.

The plan has three big goals to achieve, underpinned by nine commitments and targets spanning social, environmental and economic performance across the value chain.

The £40 million initiative is said to have supported over 50 projects with businesses across South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

Md Mokammel Hossain, additional secretary for SDG Affairs at the Prime Minister's Office, Kedar Lele, chief executive officer and managing director of Unilever Bangladesh, and Chris Edward, strategic partnership and innovation manager at the DFID, spoke on the occasion.

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