McKesson Foundation and Celesio Group Commit More than $250,000 in Disaster Relief Funding to Aid Refugees

September 28, 2015

Grants to support international relief groups to address migrant and refugee crisis in Middle East and Europe; Celesio joins McKesson Foundation in matching employee donations to relief organizations.

San Francisco (September 28, 2015) — Today, the McKesson Foundation announced it is committing two separate $100,000 grants to nonprofits Direct Relief and the International Rescue Committee. The donations will be used by the two international relief agencies to provide disaster response to those affected by what some have described as the world’s largest migrant and refugee crisis since World War II. In addition, McKesson’s Celesio business will match up to a total of €50,000 in donation matching for employees in Europe, and the McKesson Foundation will match donations made by employees in the U.S. and Canada. Together, the McKesson and Celesio donations will total more than $250,000.

With millions of migrants and refugees fleeing violent conflicts in the Middle East and Africa, a refugee emergency of this scope demands international leadership and cooperation. The McKesson Foundation and Celesio found it imperative to join the international community in providing aid to address this global crisis and help the scores of people seeking sanctuary.

“The current migrant and refugee crisis is truly global, and our response must also cross borders,” said Christine Lopez, President of the McKesson Foundation. “In that spirit, our American, Canadian and European colleagues are joining forces to support nonprofit agencies working for migrant and refugee relief.”

As part of the McKesson Foundation’s annual efforts to support disaster response, a $100,000 donation will be given to Direct Relief, a nonprofit that provides essential medical assistance services to those affected by natural and manmade disasters. Direct Relief is providing medical aid to doctors, medical missions, and local organizations in Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, and Turkey to help refugees who have fled their homelands.

“As this humanitarian crisis unfolds and millions of people face extraordinary hardship while seeking refuge and safety, Direct Relief is deeply thankful for the McKesson Foundation’s inspiring act of generosity and leadership,” said Direct Relief President and CEO Thomas Tighe.

In recognition of relief agencies’ urgent need for assistance, the McKesson Foundation will also provide a special grant of $100,000 to the International Rescue Committee. The International Rescue Committee is delivering critical and lifesaving aid, including safe drinking water and sanitation, to vulnerable families fleeing to Europe from Syria and other conflict zones.

“Each day we are seeing more than two thousand refugees arrive on the shores of Lesbos, Greece who have fled violence, hopelessness and persecution” said David Miliband, president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee. “We are honored to partner with the McKesson Foundation as we work to provide these individuals with the resources they need to build a safer and more secure life for themselves and their families.”

In additions to its grants, the McKesson Foundation will double any donations made by U.S. and Canada McKesson employees that support humanitarian relief for refugees through the McKesson Foundation’s Matching Gifts program. For more information about the McKesson Foundation’s support for the migrant and refugee crisis, please contact

The Celesio Group has launched a donation matching program. Each euro that its employees donate to the International Red Cross by October 30, 2015 will be doubled by Celesio, up to a total of €50,000. McKesson is the majority shareholder of Celesio AG.

“As one of the leading healthcare providers in Europe, Celesio is assuming a share of the responsibility for the refugees,” said Marc Owen, Chairman of the Management Board of Celesio. For 180 years, Celesio and its employees have been committed to helping people in healthcare matters and emergencies. It is not only a long-term commitment, but also an important part of our corporate social responsibility activities.”

About The McKesson Foundation

The McKesson Foundation is a healthcare foundation focused on funding organizations that provide non-medical direct services to low-income cancer patients. Each year the McKesson Foundation contributes more than $5.5 million to nonprofit organizations working to improve the health of our communities. Over the past three years, the Foundation has matched more than $3.3 million in employee donations to charitable organizations. For more information about the McKesson Foundation, please contact us at

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