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Little and Large

Doing good on a large scale
  • In parts of Africa, negative attitudes towards infertility can have devastating consequences for women. Merck KGaA’s More Than a Mother campaign aims to de-stigmatize female infertility, as well as raise awareness about male infertility. The project hopes to achieve this through integration into existing healthcare infrastructure, such as HIV, maternal health and mother and child programs. Merck are also investing in education and training for African embryologists and trying to “build advocacy” by working with policy makers, healthcare providers, fertility experts and the media. The More Than a Mother campaign also involves the “Empowering Berna” project. Berna Amullen is a Ugandan woman who suffered mistreatment, discrimination and violence as a result of her infertility. Merck provided support for Berna to start her own business. The Empowering Berna project helps other women suffering from infertility to set up their own businesses.
  • The Sanofi Espoir Corporate Foundation – launched seven years ago – focuses on three areas: childhood cancer, maternal and child mortality, and access to healthcare for the world’s poorest populations. The Foundation’s three year budget is €15 million and, so far, it has donated 122,000 boxes of drugs and 331,500 doses of vaccines across China, Ecuador, Haiti, India and Macedonia.
  • Zuellig Group, an Asia-based pharmaceutical company, donates an average of $2.3 million every year to the Zuellig Family Foundation, which focuses on improving health conditions in rural Filipino communities. It provides training programs for local government health leaders, including mayors and municipal health officers, to strengthen health leadership and improve governance. The program serves 640 municipalities in the Philippines – 42 percent of the country – aided by partnerships with the Philippine health department, the United Nations, and the US government.
Doing good on a smaller scale
  • Divas Pharmaceutical Company, based in India, donated 50 motorcycles to the Visakhapatnam traffic police in Andhra Pradesh, India.
  • Vectura, a pharma company based in the UK, organized a sponsored bicycle ride between their two UK offices in Chippenham and Cambridge – around 150 miles. The ride raised money for Asthma UK, which provides support for around five million people.
  • Tobinco Pharmaceuticals Limited, and its Samuel Amo Tobbin Foundation, donated two incubators to the St Paul’s hospital in Akatsi, Ghana. The aim is to reduce the number of deaths due to premature birth at the hospital.
  • Thea Pharmaceuticals, an ophthalmic pharma company based in the UK, spent a day gardening for Blind Veterans UK. The company raised money for the charity, and it’s Surgical and Medical teams planted a natural, woodland garden.



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About the Author
James Strachan

Over the course of my Biomedical Sciences degree it dawned on me that my goal of becoming a scientist didn’t quite mesh with my lack of affinity for lab work. Thinking on my decision to pursue biology rather than English at age 15 – despite an aptitude for the latter – I realized that science writing was a way to combine what I loved with what I was good at.


From there I set out to gather as much freelancing experience as I could, spending 2 years developing scientific content for International Innovation, before completing an MSc in Science Communication. After gaining invaluable experience in supporting the communications efforts of CERN and IN-PART, I joined Texere – where I am focused on producing consistently engaging, cutting-edge and innovative content for our specialist audiences around the world.

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