Social responsibility

In 2020, the Bank conducted a range of initiatives under its comprehensive and long-term corporate social responsibility strategy “Bukra”. Launched in 2019, Bukra was developed after extensive analysis and consultation with many stakeholders to identify the crucial elements of an appropriate and effective roadmap. Bukra is aligned with the best practices of the most important local, regional and global frameworks, including Vision 2030, the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact, and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Bukra has four main pillars: Environment, Society, Economy and Knowledge. It aims to create initiatives and programs to address the requirements of sustainable development in a multifaceted, holistic sense. The CSR Committee, which is headed by the Chairman and includes the CEO, representatives of the Bank’s divisions and the CSR Management team in the Communication and Customer Experience Department, guides the strategy and its implementation, sets standards and targets, determines new initiatives, and reviews and assesses ongoing programs and projects.

Through Bukra, the Bank aims to achieve sustainable development goals set by the United Nations:

COVID-19 Initiatives

Many of the projects executed during 2020 were aimed at addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, while still broadly following the four pillars of the strategy. Since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Saudi Arabia at the beginning of March, the Bank aimed at ensuring the wellbeing of its employees and curbing the progress of the virus within the organization. Initially awareness messages were shared through email and text messages; this was followed by distributing 7,000 safety boxes containing masks, gloves, and sanitizers to all Bank employees. Externally, the Bank participated in the “We are Responsible and I'm the First One” Campaign, which sought to encourage the community to be responsible during the COVID-19 quarantine, by donating SAR 17 Mn to the Health Fund launched by Ministry of Health for purchase of medical equipment (including 250 ventilators) and materials.

As the year went on, the Bank turned its focus towards relief efforts to those affected by the pandemic across the Kingdom. The Bank supported the Society Fund initiative launched by Ministry of Human Resource and Social Development and the General Authority for Awqaf with a contribution of SAR 10.73 Mn, which accounted for 17,000 meals and 6,000 food baskets. During Ramadan, the Bank partnered with Saudi Food Bank and various charities to distribute 10,000 food boxes to the families in need.

In the educational sphere, the Bank collaborated with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology to distribute 677 tablets to students across the Kingdom to facilitate their study-from-home efforts.

Contribution to the society

Contributing SAR 10.73 Mn. to Society Fund for meals and food baskets

Donating SAR 17 Mn. to Health Fund for purchase of medical equipment

Distributing 7,000 safety boxes to all staff

Distributed 677 tablets to students to promote home study

Partnering with charities to distribute 10,000 food baskets


Community Health, Wellness, and Inclusivity Efforts

Support for Autism Centre of Excellence

Participation in research project on effects of COVID-19 on disabled persons and their families

Carried out health awareness programs to mark many important health events

Sponsored programs on economic and financial awareness and entrepreneurship

Assisting the disabled by recruitment as well as technology and awareness programs

Hired 134 students within Internship and Coop Training Programs

Beyond these COVID-19 related activities, the Bank also conducted a range of projects in line with the four pillars of Bukra. In terms of its wider contributions to the health sector, a highlight of the Bank’s efforts was its partnership with the Autism Centre of Excellence. In 2018, Riyad Bank signed an agreement with the Ministry of Human resources and Social Development to fund the Centre for five years. This funding supports the Centre’s operations, research, and development. In 2020, the Centre was able to pursue a rigorous program, including some very timely initiatives like participating in an international research project studying the effects of COVID-19 on people with disabilities and their families.

In addition, Riyad Bank signed an agreement with King Faisal Specialist Hospital in 2018 to fund the Centre for Autism Research for three years. This fund supports the Centre’s Operations, Research, and Development. The Bank also supported several blood donation campaigns in which collected a total of 168,970 ml from 382 donors participated.

The Bank carried out many educational awareness programs through email broadcasts and social media including programs for World Cancer Day, Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and World Diabetes Day. It also promoted a fitness program which incentivized employees to exercise at home during the pandemic.

In 2020, the Bank placed a special emphasis on the topic of disability, making a commitment to build internal awareness and invest in training, make accessibility a priority, make use of assistive technology (such as Text to Speech) and promote Sign Language induction and training. This year, the Bank hired qualified employees with disabilities in both the Head Office and the Olaya Building, bringing its total number of employees with disabilities to ten. The Bank also undertook a physical analysis of the Head Office and the Olaya Building and committed to implementing accommodations for people with disabilities. To create a disability-friendly culture, the Bank conducted workshops to educate Bank employees on the best practices for inclusion (eight workshops were held and 200 employees trained). A video about the experiences of the Bank’s employees with disabilities was disseminated. About 50 employees also participated in an empathy enhancing activity where they simulate the life of a disabled person for one day.


Environmental Efforts

Recycled 3,480 kgs of waste

Reduced paper usage by 7,520 kgs and reduced toner cost by 73%

Electricity savings program to reduce electricity consumption by 15% in 2021

The centerpiece of the Bank’s internal environment initiatives was its multi-pronged Recycling Project. As part of the “Saving the Environment Movement” and “Be a Responsible Employee” initiatives, the Bank encouraged, two recycling bins were placed in each division (one for paper, one for plastic). Emails were sent to all employees encouraging them to participate and take an internal Pledge of Recycling. The Bank also promoted the idea of the “Recycling Ecosystem” to the Head Office, Regional Offices, and 12 Branches of the Bank around Riyadh. The recycling program, overall, had the following impact:

  • By recycling 3,480 kg of waste, the Bank saved 80 cubic meters of landfill, almost 14 tons of CO2 (Data from EPA), and 59 trees.
  • Along with the recycling initiative, the Bank made an effort to reduce the volume of material printed, saving 7,520 kg of paper over the previous year and reducing toner costs by 73% (from SAR 1,392,997 in 2019 to SAR 371,669 in 2020.

In 2020, the Procurement Department at Riyad Bank worked on sustainable methods and systems that allowed the Bank to select and purchase from vendors and manage purchases in line with more responsible, environmentally-friendly ways. The Bank conducted training sessions and certification courses for SME suppliers to inculcate best sustainability practices. In 2020, the Bank engaged 262 vendors, which was an increase of more than 70% over 2019.