As the second anniversary of the devastating Haiti earthquake
approaches, the IKEA Foundation helps to get education back on track.
BURLINGTON, ON, Jan. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Guided by its mission to create
opportunities for children in developing countries, the IKEA Foundation
has provided a €300,000 ($400,000) donation to Save the Children for a literacy program for Haitian children. In total the IKEA Foundation has
supported Haiti with over $1 million of in-kind and cash donations
through its partners, UNICEF and Save the Children.
When the earthquake struck Haiti on January 12, 2010, it damaged or
destroyed 90% of the schools in Port-au-Prince and Leogane, and more
than 60% of schools in the South and West departments. Even before the
Haiti disaster, children's hopes of receiving a quality education were
grim. Many classrooms had over 60 students, and only half of the
children aged six to 12 attended school.
With the IKEA Foundation's donation to Save the Children there will be
an increase in meaningful programs for improving children's literacy in
Haiti. This includes learning kits and teaching aids to new teachers.
Children will also get the basics like books, pens and pencils; items
the children did not even have before the earthquake.
"Our aim in Haiti has been to help kids recover from the quake,"
explains Per Heggenes, CEO of the IKEA Foundation, "but also to improve
their reading and writing skills by supporting innovative new
In addition to this donation, the IKEA Foundation also supported the
relief efforts of Haiti, shortly after the earthquake, with over
€500,000 ($670,000) worth of emergency in-kind support to UNICEF. This
gift mainly consisted of thousands of towels and blankets for families
left without homes who were forced to live in shelters.
Better access and quality
Save the Children is working closely with schools, Parent-Teacher
Associations (PTAs) and Haiti's Ministry of Education to improve girls'
and boys' access to a quality education.
The program has set ambitious goals for the upcoming year. By training
120 teachers, 20 school principals and ten school inspectors, as many
as 4,000 children will benefit from this fresh approach to improving
quality. The program is also focusing on the importance of getting
parents involved in the schools, with plans to motivate 200 parents to
join PTAs and become advocates for education in their communities.
By working with partners like Save the Children and UNICEF, who have extensive networks and decades of experience, we are able
secure top experts, develop innovative approaches, supply much needed
support and comfort, influence and navigate government policy, and
achieve the critical mass it takes to make an impact for as many
children as possible.
Long road to recovery
After suffering heartbreak and upheaval, families in Haiti will be
putting their lives back together for years to come. Improving
children's education is one way the IKEA Foundation can help. Having
supported Haitian families immediately after the earthquake with
in-kind donations from IKEA, the Foundation is also supporting programs
that will benefit children and their families long into the future.
For more information about Save the Children: http://www.savethechildren.net
About the IKEA Foundation:
The IKEA Foundation aims to improve the opportunities for children and
youth by funding holistic, long-term programmes that can create
substantial, lasting change, and enable them to take charge of their
own future. We work with strong strategic partners applying innovative
approaches to achieve large-scale results in four fundamental areas of
a child's life: home, health, education and family income. Currently
funded programmes benefit an estimated 100 million children. Learn more
Image with caption: "Institut Abellard, Leogane Haiti: First grade students Anderson Jean Marie and Christopher Pierre recite a song in their class. Institut Abellard is made up of eight classrooms with an average of 30 children per class. Save the Children built the school, the latrines and the hand washing station and provided, furniture and education kits. Save the Children is also providing teachers here with training. (CNW Group/IKEA Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120111_C3191_PHOTO_EN_8808.jpg
Image with caption: "Institut Abellard, Leogane Haiti: Rose Carme Evenéta Clerveau, 10 years old, lost her sister and cousin in the earthquake. Because she has seen people suffer she told us that she wants to become a doctor. "I would like to do many things in life-I would like to be a doctor-because I would like to take care of people. I don't like to see people suffer." (CNW Group/IKEA Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120111_C3191_PHOTO_EN_8810.jpg
Image with caption: "Jacmel, Haiti: A woman carries a bucket of water from the Save the Children water distribution point to her tent section in Pechinat Camp, in the South-East city of Jacmel, Haiti. Millions of people were displaced by the earthquake and children were left highly vulnerable. (CNW Group/IKEA Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120111_C3191_PHOTO_EN_8812.jpg
SOURCE IKEA Canada
For further information:
Jonathan Spampinato, Head of Communications, IKEA Foundation
Tel: (+31) 61 175 6336