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Thursday, September 21, 2023
NEW YORK, Sep 26 2022 - Taking the stage at this weekend’s Global Citizen Festival in New York’s Central Park, the LEGO Foundation CEO Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen announced a substantial new US$25 million contribution to Education Cannot Wait (ECW), the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises.
Joining her on stage, ECW Director Yasmine Sherif hailed the impact the new, additional contribution will have in realizing the dreams of an education for children impacted by wars and crises across the globe. The LEGO Foundation is the largest private-sector donor to ECW, with approximately US$65 million in total contributions to date.
“Imagine there was a magic lever that could transform the lived experiences of the 222 million children and youth living in crisis contexts into the peacekeepers and builders of tomorrow. Well, there is: Education. To help build this lever, the LEGO Foundation is thrilled to announce US$25 million in new funding to Education Cannot Wait,” said Albrectsen.
The LEGO Foundation shares the mission of the LEGO Group: to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow. The Foundation is dedicated to building a future in which learning through play empowers children to become creative, engaged, lifelong learners. With contributions from The LEGO Foundation and other donors, ECW has reached 7 million crisis-impacted children and adolescents with holistic educational supports since its inception in 2016.
“ECW deeply appreciates this new, additional contribution from the LEGO Foundation, our largest private sector donor. The LEGO Foundation shines as an example of the private sector’s transformative force for humanity. Today, 222 million children worldwide have had their education disrupted by crises; funding like this is essential to get them back on track. We call on all public and private sector partners to help ECW achieve our financing challenge for an additional $1.5 billion to urgently deliver quality education for millions of crisis-affected children,” said Sherif.
Shocking new analysis from ECW indicates that as many as 222 million crisis-impacted girls and boys are in need of urgent education support – up from previous estimates of 75 million in 2016. More than 78 million of these children are out of school altogether, with approximately 120 million not attaining minimum proficiencies in math or reading.
Global Citizen is a long-standing partner of Education Cannot Wait. In advance of this year’s festival the organization called for Global Citizens everywhere to support ECW’s goals to mobilize US$1.5 billion over the next four years to reach 20 million crisis-impacted children and adolescents with the safety, hope and opportunity of a quality education through the #222MillionDreams campaign.
Performances at Global Citizen included Metallica, Charlie Puth, Jonas Brothers, Måneskin, Mariah Carey, Mickey Guyton and Rosalía. Throughout the day, world leaders, major corporations and philanthropic foundations announced new commitments to End Extreme Poverty Now, including notable contribution announcements to Education Cannot Wait.
People looking to make a difference can call for leaders to take action using the #222MillionDreams hashtag, by making individual donations to ECW, and by taking action with Global Citizen and The LEGO Foundation.
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