Bupa Foundation and CVA join forces to promote a healthy planet for healthy people

In a new national partnership, the Bupa Foundation and Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) will work together to improve the physical and mental health and wellbeing of Australians through practical, everyday opportunities that foster a closer relationship with nature.


“Healthy Planet, Healthy People” will be developed by CVA and the Bupa Foundation to better understand and promote the benefits to personal health and wellbeing arising from nature conservation volunteering activities. The work will build on and inform an increasing body of research from the University of Essex showing that volunteering in nature improves wellbeing of participants [1].

The partnership is a significant next step in CVA’s ambitious 5-year agenda to build and activate a nationwide community of 1 million Nature Stewards focused on protecting our natural environment against climate change and biodiversity loss and their impacts.

According to Bupa Asia Pacific CEO Hisham El-Ansary, The Bupa Foundation’s year one investment of $250,000 with CVA aims to unite Bupa’s people, customers, and the wider community in creating a healthier world.

“As millions of Australians emerge from life in lockdown, there has never been a better time to focus on our physical and mental health, spending time with other people in nature through volunteering. We want to help build a national movement of people who understand, value and benefit from connecting with and nurturing our natural environment”

– Hisham El-Ansary, Bupa Asia Pacific CEO

According to Phil Harrison, CEO of Conservation Volunteers Australia, activating more Australians in caring for nature, creates a win-win for the wellbeing of our people and our planet.

“With Bupa’s support, CVA will be able to further our research and development into best practices for designing and delivering experiences which tangibly increase individual and collective wellbeing, improve people’s relationship with nature, and bring about healthier environments. This approach is key to unlocking the value at the heart of people taking action for nature and bouncing back from the pandemic with a focus on creating a future in which people and nature thrive together.

“The timing of this new relationship reflects our strong internal recommitment to promoting the people+nature equation for the 99% of Australians who will benefit from more time in nature, and who want to do something practical to help. The name of the “Healthy Planet, Healthy People” initiative describes our shared goal perfectly.”

The Bupa Foundation’s partnership with CVA was announced at one of CVA’s first volunteering opportunities since COVID lockdowns lifted in Melbourne. Bupa employees volunteered to clean Altona Beach of plastic litter that has a disastrous impact on the environment and the animals that call the area home.


About the Partnership

Delivering on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 3 – Good Health & Well-being, 13 – Climate Action, 14 – Life Below Water, 15 – Life On Land, and 17 – Partnership For The Goals, this partnership is set to deliver progress for communities and nature alike.

The partnership represents an investment by the Bupa Foundation in Conservation Volunteers Australia’s core mission and capability, and will support activities which reach Bupa staff, customers, and the broader community with experiences which support them to care for nature and improve their wellbeing.

The partnership has already been recognised as a 2021 Shared Value Award Finalist, in the Project of the year early-stage category.


About the Bupa Foundation

Bupa is a health and care insurance company committed to helping their customers live longer, healthier, happier lives and making a better world. The Bupa Foundation aims to prevent and control disease in human beings, with a focus on mental illness, anxiety, and depression.

For more information, visit bupa.com.au/about-us/bupa-health-foundation



[1] Volunteering outside helps improve mental health, University of Essex, 2017. https://www.essex.ac.uk/news/2017/10/02/volunteering-outside-help-improve-mental-health

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