NEW YORK, NY – February 29, 2024 – The Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) Global Foundation, part of SMBC Group, is helping increase access to outdoor-based programs that develop resiliency and enable younger generations to lead bright futures with the launch of SMBC Building Resilient Futures (BRF), announced today.

The program will support organizations that enable young people with limited opportunities to access high-impact, outdoor-based experiences and educational programs. SMBC’s pilot commitment will support an estimated 750 youths this year, in partnership with American Camp AssociationChange Summer, and Outward Bound. The partnership will offer access to outdoor programs that aim to enhance confidence, character, and well-being through a deeper connection to peers and the outdoors.

“Throughout SMBC’s 400-year history, we have leveraged our strengths to create economic and social value,” said Eric Eckholdt, President of the SMBC Global Foundation and Head of Corporate Citizenship, SMBC Americas Division. “With the launch of Building Resilient Futures, we deepen that commitment by partnering with organizations that align with the Group’s focus on addressing issues connected to the environment, inclusion, poverty, and inequality.”

BRF’s partners primarily focus on summer camp experiences, which have been proven to enhance youth education and connectivity. While nearly half of teenagers report using the internet almost constantly, youth with high-quality camp experiences report higher social awareness, independence, and willingness to try new things. Educational summer activities have also been proven to help close the socioeconomic achievement gap among youth.

“At American Camp Association (ACA) we know quality camp experiences build a world of belonging and growth for young people. At camp, children become more confident and resilient while learning important skills like communication, leadership, teamwork, independence, responsibility, and decision-making,” said Tom Rosenberg, President and CEO, American Camp Association. “Through their partnership, camps and schools will serve their communities by setting up today’s youth for success, and this generous grant by SMBC Global Foundation is an important step toward that future.”

“Change Summer is incredibly grateful for the SMBC Global Foundation’s support and partnership. This grant enables us to provide more than 400 young people from under-resourced communities with a high-quality, joyful sleepaway summer camp experience. Campers will have the opportunity to grow their social-emotional skills and engage in a variety of enriching activities, from swimming and soccer to music and dance,” said Joshua J. Phillips, CEO, Change Summer.

“As Outward Bound USA seeks to increase access to outdoor experiences for young people, we know that our success depends on philanthropic partnerships. SMBC Global Foundation’s investment in our work will inspire a sense of belonging and well-being for many young people.  We are honored to make a positive impact together, changing lives through challenge and discovery,” said Ginger Naylor, CEO, Outward Bound USA.

Following the inaugural BRF cohort, SMBC plans to expand the program to serve more young people across the Americas.

About SMBC Group
SMBC Group is a top-tier global financial group. Headquartered in Tokyo and with a 400-year history, SMBC Group offers a diverse range of financial services, including banking, leasing, securities, credit cards, and consumer finance. SMBC Group has more than 150 offices and 86,000 employees worldwide in nearly 40 countries. Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Inc. (SMFG) is the holding company of SMBC Group, which is one of the three largest banking groups in Japan. SMFG’s shares trade on the Tokyo, Nagoya, and ADRs on the New York (NYSE: SMFG) stock exchanges.

In the Americas, SMBC Group has a presence in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Peru. Backed by the capital strength of SMBC Group and the value of its relationships in Asia, the Group offers a range of commercial and investment banking services to its corporate, institutional, and municipal clients. It connects a diverse client base to local markets and the organization’s extensive global network. The Group’s operating companies in the Americas include Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. (SMBC), SMBC Nikko Securities America, Inc., SMBC Nikko Securities Canada, Ltd., SMBC Capital Markets, Inc., SMBC MANUBANK, JRI America, Inc., SMBC Leasing and Finance, Inc., Banco Sumitomo Mitsui Brasileiro S.A., and Sumitomo Mitsui Finance and Leasing Co., Ltd. For more information, please visit

About American Camp Association
The American Camp Association® (ACA) is a national nonprofit organization serving the more than 15,000 year-round and summer camps in the U.S. that annually serve 26 million campers. ACA is committed to collaborating with those who believe in quality camp and outdoor experiences for children, youth, and adults. ACA provides advocacy, evidence-based education, and professional development, and is the only independent national accrediting body for the organized camp experience. ACA accreditation provides public evidence of a camp’s voluntary commitment to the health, safety, risk management, and overall well-being of campers and staff. For more information, visit 

About Change Summer
Change Summer provides young people from under-resourced and under-represented communities with a fantastic summer experience that increases their confidence, curiosity, independence, and responsibility—all critical skills for a successful future. Change Summer partners with leading school organizations to provide their students with an exciting, two-week overnight camp experience on a college campus. Campers have the opportunity to build a tight-knit community in a safe, inclusive setting that allows for exploration, learning, and fun. Through intentional daily programming that includes a variety of enjoyable enrichment activities, campers learn about themselves and each other as they experience living away from home. Change Summer’s ultimate goal is to provide a high-quality, engaging summer experience that helps campers develop their social and emotional skills to better prepare for high school, college, and beyond. 

About Outward Bound
Outward Bound is a national network of non-profit educational organizations in the United States—including ten Regional Schools, serving over 30,000 students each year. Outward Bound’s mission is to change lives through challenge and discovery. While perhaps ambitious and bold, our vision is a more resilient and compassionate world, with more endurance in response to change and more courage in the face of challenge. Outward Bound programs provide increased access for today’s youth to develop social emotional skills and build their capacity to navigate the future with confidence, compassion, and curiosity. Programs are far-reaching—inside city and suburban classrooms and outside in rugged backcountry settings—lasting anywhere from one day to an entire semester. We strive to provide educational experiences that are inclusive and relevant for all participants and are committed to organizational improvement in support of an equitable society and a sustainable future. Learn more at