DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), a global leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement and payments, and the Western Union Foundation today announced a package of relief efforts for India aimed at combating its latest, devastating phase in the COVID-19 pandemic, and kicked off a fundraising appeal with Western Union employees worldwide.
In collaboration with United Way India (UWI), the Western Union Foundation will fund medical respiratory support machines for hospitals and at-home care kits for families, expected to benefit up to 5,000 households in the Maharashtra region immediately. Beginning May 4th, Western Union will also waive transfer fees*—for two weeks for digital channels, and four weeks for retail channels—for monies sent by family and friends from select countries directly into Indian bank accounts.
“We stand in solidarity with the people of India as they confront this latest phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our thoughts and prayers are with our customers, our agents, our employees and their families,” said Sohini Rajola, Head of Regional Network, Middle East and APAC.
“The people of India, my home nation, are showing remarkable courage and resilience. We are comforted that the financial support of the Western Union Foundation and our zero-fee action will contribute to much-needed medical relief and facilitate additional financial flows into the country, supporting people’s everyday needs, including medicine and health care,” she said.
“A core mission of the Western Union Foundation is the support of vulnerable people in times of extreme need,” said Executive Director Elizabeth Roscoe. “Working with United Way India, we are hopeful that our resources will help the people of the Maharashtra region as they grapple with this crisis.
“We also want to extend our deepest gratitude to local emergency and health care workers, whose efforts in the face of unimaginable difficulty are an ongoing inspiration to people everywhere,” Roscoe said.
Western Union Foundation & United Way India
UWI, in conjunction with large government hospitals, will manage the distribution of respiratory support machines such as non-invasive ventilators and oxygen generators, which are critically required at hospitals—particularly to help support patients who are in the moderately severe category from getting worse.
UWI will also deliver at-home care kits suitable to treat non-critical COVID patients outside the hospital by equipping them with COVID monitoring techniques, oximeters to monitor blood oxygen levels, and thermometers. The at-home care kits enable families to monitor their symptoms without a hospital trip that risks exposure and further burdening already overwhelmed health care facilities. This program will primarily serve underprivileged patients across the hardest-hit, most remote, and lowest-income communities in the region.
The Western Union Foundation has committed $200,000 to the United Way India for this effort (NOTE: assuming all the funds will be given to UWI directly). Further, all funds raised by the Foundation’s Western Union employee appeal will be granted to UWI, with the goal of raising an additional $50,000.
Western Union Zero-transfer fee to Indian Bank Accounts
Commencing May 4th, 2021, Western Union will waive transfer fees* to Indian bank accounts, for two weeks for digital channels, through May 18th; and four weeks for retail channels, through June 4th. To avail themselves of the offer, customers must send money directly into Indian bank accounts via westernunion.com and the Western union mobile app from Canada, Europe & CIS and the U.S.; and from retail agent locations across Australia, Canada, Europe & CIS, New Zealand and the U.S.**
About Western Union
The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU) is a global leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement and payments. Western Union’s platform provides seamless cross-border flows and its leading global financial network bridges more than 200 countries and territories and over 130 currencies. We connect businesses, financial institutions, governments, and consumers through one of the world’s widest reaching networks, accessing billions of bank accounts, millions of digital wallets, and cards, and over half a million retail locations. Western Union connects the world to bring boundless possibilities within reach. For more information, visit www.westernunion.com.
About the Western Union Foundation
The Western Union Foundation believes that education is the surest pathway to economic opportunity. After 20 years of impact, we continue to deliver on our mission with Opportunity Beyond Borders, focused on empowering forcibly displaced and marginalized youth with the training and education needed to succeed in today’s technology-driven global economy. The Foundation also provides funding for humanitarian efforts for communities in crisis and disaster, one key reason for forced migration. To date, we have funded more than $131 million for projects and scholarships. The Western Union Foundation is a separate, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) charitable corporation and receives support from The Western Union Company, its employees, agents, and business partners. Contributions to the Foundation are tax-deductible for U.S. income tax purposes. To learn more, visit wu.com/foundation or follow us on Twitter @TheWUFoundation.
*Western Union also makes money from currency exchange. When choosing a money transmitter, carefully compare both transfer fees and exchange rates. Fees, foreign exchange rates, and taxes may vary by brand, channel, and location-based on several factors. Fees and rates subject to change without notice.
** Consumers in the U.S. and Canada were previously offered zero-transfer fee transactions into India when sending digitally for Account Payout.