Date Published: 30 October 2008

IKEA, UNICEF and Save the Children team up for children

Health News from around the world.

This festive season, IKEA, UNICEF and Save the Children are teaming up to ask customers in the UK to join them in helping to improve education for thousands of children worldwide.

Between Saturday 1 November and Tuesday 23 December, for every IKEA soft toy purchased in its 286 stores worldwide, including 17 stores in the UK, IKEA will donate the equivalent of ?1 (£1 in the UK). This money will be split between UNICEF and Save the Children, funding 16 education projects in 14 countries.

Launched in 2003, the annual IKEA Soft Toy Campaign has to-date raised £8.8 million for children around the world. The 2008 campaign aims to raise a further £342,000 globally.

The 2008 campaign will benefit eight UNICEF projects in Macedonia, Moldova, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Vietnam and eight Save the Children projects in Albania, Bangladesh, China, India, Ivory Coast, Pakistan, Russia and Vietnam, helping to support and improve children's education.

The funds raised will support work to improve school facilities, provide access to water and sanitation, ensure disabled children have the opportunity to learn, and provide essential educational supplies such as books, pencils and writing pads to children and teachers.

The IKEA Soft Toy Campaign is an opportunity for both IKEA customers and co-workers to get involved in working for children in the run-up to the festive season.

"We hope to sell as many as five million soft toys. The money raised from just one soft toy alone is enough to buy books and pencils for five children. Together we can bring countless smiles to the faces of many, many children eager to learn and thrive," said Marianne Barner, head of IKEA Social Initiative.

"Education has the power to transform a child's life, ending poverty, protecting them from disease and providing them with a future, yet globally millions of children miss out on this basic right. With the continued commitment and support from IKEA, we can ensure that children across the world have the opportunity to learn, to fulfill their potential and to grow into healthy adults" added Anne Shinkwin, Head of Corporate Fundraising.UNICEF UK

The IKEA partnership with UNICEF and Save the Children's Fund will contribute to achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals of Equal access to education for all girls and boys, and quality education in a child-friendly environment is the foundation. By ensuring that all children have access to education, it becomes possible to build the knowledge necessary to combat disease and eradicate poverty and hunger.

IKEA soft toys are available in each of the 17 stores, including: Warrington, Gateshead, Wednesbury, Leeds, Lakeside, Nottingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Cardiff, Ashton, Edmonton, Milton Keynes, Belfast, Coventry, Bristol, Croydon and Wembley.

The soft toys included in the promotion range in price from 35p to £12.99.

For further information about the IKEA Soft Toy Campaign, please contact Jeremy Sprigge on 0207 312 7720 or e-mail jeremys@unicef.org.uk

Source: UNICEF Press Release
http://www.unicef.org

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