Diabetes donations in action

Sun Life Financial is committed to the prevention of diabetes and its related complications. Our funding for diabetes programs encourages and helps in prevention, promotes awareness, furthers innovative advances in research and provides specialized care.

National partnerships and programs:

University Health Network (UHN)

Sun Life and UHN have been proud partners since 2016. Together, we established the Sun Life Diabetes College, an online resource hub. It provides best practices in type 2 diabetes self-management and delivers evidence based courses for patients, their families and health-care providers across Canada, and online globally. ​ The resource hub is available in eight different countries and languages.

Right to Play

Sun Life has teamed up with RIGHT TO PLAY to use sport and play to educate and empower children and youth living in adversity to build essential life-skills and better futures, while driving lasting social change through its PLAY (Promoting Life-skills in Aboriginal Youth) Play For Prevention program (PFP).

PFP is a component of the PLAY program and aims to address the gaps in type 2 diabetes prevention among indigenous youth populations by focusing on education, awareness and the promotion of healthy and active living. Guided by an Indigenous community development model, PFP equips community mentors with the skills and tools needed to lead more than 100 outcome-based games, while enhancing and building life-skills among youth in their programs. The program works with urban indigenous youth who are at a heightened and increasing risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It encourages healthy living through physical activity and healthy nutrition workshops, and provides an interactive environment for participants to learn about the aspects of health that may contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes.

MLSE Foundation

Starting in  2017, Sun Life partnered with MLSE Foundation to support the Healthy Me, Healthy Community diabetes prevention program and the launch of the Sun Life Nutrition Hub housed at MLSE LaunchPad in Toronto.

The Nutrition Hub is an on-site, full learning kitchen dedicated to teaching healthy eating habits and the importance of a well-balanced diet to prevent type 2 diabetes to seven to 12 year olds participating in a six-week, after-school program

Canada’s Children Hospital Foundation
Sun Life partnered with Canada’s Children Hospital Foundation in 2017 to establish The Sun Life Child and Youth Diabetes Prevention Program.

The goal of the program is to improve the adoption of healthy lifestyle choice for children and adolescents. This national program develops educational materials that are shared with health professionals across the country through pediatric hospitals. 

University of Winnipeg

Sun Life’s partnership with University of Winnipeg helped create a program to educate youth and children on prevention of type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Awareness and Education Program helps children between the ages of 10 and 15 learn about diabetes and prevention strategies including good nutrition and physical activity. It encourages the development of healthy habits, which is crucial in the prevention and management of diabetes. 

William Osler Health Foundation

In partnership with the William Osler Health Foundation, Sun Life supports two diabetes initiatives – the Sun Life at Risk Diabetes Initiative and the Sun Life Osler Global Health Program.

Sun Life at Risk Diabetes Initiative: The program supports people at risk for or with prediabetes in the form of workshops on food preparation, diet and exercise. It recruits participants through William Osler Health System Outreach program and Pediatric Lifestyle Clinic.

Sun Life Osler Global Health Program: The program supports diabetes screening and treatment to benefit patients in high priority communities in India and Pakistan.

Wilfrid Laurier University:

Sun Life’s partnership with Wilfrid Laurier University helped establish the Sun Life Centre for Physically Active Communities. The program provides physical activity programming for youth and children, including those at risk of developing type 2 diabetes in high priority neighborhoods, such as new comers to Canada and Indigenous communities.

Diabetes Québec

In 2012, Sun Life became a major partner of Diabetes Québec to advance our new commitment to prevent type 2 diabetes. Over years of collaboration, Sun Life’s contributions have enabled Diabetes Québec to:

  • Create the first website dedicated to the prevention of type 2 diabetes in Quebec.
  • Run a televised diabetes prevention advertising campaign.
  • Operate diabetes screening clinics for employees and the public.
  • Establish a funding program for local affiliated associations.
  • Develop educational tools about the mental health impacts of diabetes (stress, depression and acceptance).

Promote Universi-D, the diabetes school launched by Diabetes Québec.

Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation

In the fall of 2020, Sun Life became presenting sponsor of the Foundation’s BLEU BLANC BOUGE Ball Hockey program. Sun Life’s support will help establish the program in 6 regions in the province – initially Montreal, Laval and Montérégie and then Estrie, Lanaudière and Mauricie. With sessions in the fall, winter and spring, the program will run in multiple communities across Quebec, allowing more than 1,900 children to learn the basics of ball hockey and develop new social and motor skills. By focusing on teamwork and fun, the program helps children in underserved communities develop the tools and skills they need to make healthy lifestyle choices and live a more active life, which in turn will help protect them from chronic diseases like diabetes.

Montreal Heart Institute Foundation

In 2018, the Montreal Heart Institute Foundation announced the creation of the Diabetes Prevention Clinic sponsored by Sun Life. The only one of its kind in Canada, this multidisciplinary program is offered at the Montreal Heart Institute's EPIC Center, the largest cardiovascular disease prevention centre in Canada.. The program meets a growing demand for preventive services for patients with diabetes and prediabetes, chronic conditions currently affecting 1 in 3 Canadians. The Diabetes Prevention Clinic’s mission is to turn the tide on diabetes through early detection and healthy lifestyle strategies and offers concrete and practical health programs that have a positive and lasting impact on patient health.

Tougo

Sun Life is a major partner of TOUGO, an initiative of the Government of Quebec. This philanthropic partnership aligns with Sun Life’s diabetes prevention and mental health commitments.

TouGo is a new, 100% Quebec platform of tips, tools and contests aimed at inspiring Quebecers to take charge of their physical and mental health through simple actions every day.