H&M is set to donate millions of dollars towards the education of child refugees
After being launched in November 2016, it’s been announced that a campaign by the H&M Foundation is set to donate $3.3 million towards the education of child refugees.
Known for its collaborations with high fashions houses like Versace, Kenzo, and Balmain, H&M has also taken steps in the right direction when it comes to representation, celebrating all different kinds of women, with its sister brand, & Other Stories, celebrating transgender models. Oh, and there’s also their adorably kooky Christmas advert, directed by Wes Anderson, which had us feeling all warm and fuzzy over the holiday season, and the brand even recently launched an initiative to help recycle unwanted clothes.
Now it’s been revealed that the H&M Foundation has raised has made a huge donation to support child refugees in getting an education.
The foundation, whose campaign was launched in November of last year, is a non-profit global foundation, privately funded by the Stefan Persson family, founders, and main owners of the fashion company H&M.
Over the holiday period, the brand made a pact to donate money for every gift card that was sold in their 4000 strong stores worldwide to help benefit refugee children in places such as Chad, Ethiopia, Iran, Kenya, Malaysia, Pakistan, Rwanda, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Uganda, and Yemen.
Teaming up with the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, H&M note that child refugees account for over half of ALL refugees, with only 50 per cent of those children having access to primary education. Upsettingly, this figure is even lower for secondary education.
Thanks to the money donated, however, H&M and the UNHCR were able to help children have access to school supplies, such as textbooks and stationary.
"Refugee children are five times more likely to be out of school than other children. This is why providing the supplies they need to go to school is so crucial," said Diana Amini, Global Manager for H&M Foundation. "With this donation, UNHCR can ensure an education for many children in crisis settings across the world."
The H&M Foundation aims to “create long lasting positive change and improve living conditions by investing in communities, people and innovative ideas.” Their main focus is on issues such as clean water, equality, protecting the planet, and education, while also providing emergency relief.
"Through campaigns like these, the public can make a real difference in the lives of refugee children around the world," said Lionello Boscardi, UNHCR Head of Partnerships. "We want to thank H&M employees and customers for supporting H&M Foundation’s global campaign with UNHCR. Education is critical to ensuring that refugee children can go on to lead more productive lives. Yet it remains underfunded."
According to a press release, “UNHCR leads international action to protect people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. UNHCR delivers life-saving assistance like shelter, food and water, helps safeguard fundamental human rights, and develops solutions that ensure people have a safe place to call home where they can build a better future.”
While there’s obviously more work to be done, it’s great to see a brand as ubiquitous as H&M helping those who are in need.