IKEA Announces $48 Million Expanded Donation to UNICEF India
NEW YORK, Feb. 24, 2009 — In lean economic times, the message at yesterday’s UN Economic and Social Council’s special event on philanthropy focused on the power of partnerships in advancing the global public health agenda.
The event also emphasized that global health must be a priority, and that philanthropic involvement will continue to be a sound financial investment.
“The role of philanthropists and philanthropic organizations such as those here today is crucially important in advancing the global health agenda,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the participants, including representatives from major foundations and corporations. The event was held on International Corporate Philanthropy Day.
“Interests have grown from the traditional philanthropic donations to more comprehensive strategic social investments that obtain measurable results and effect lasting change,” added UNICEF’s Chief of Health, Dr. Peter Salama, at a panel on global public health.
A lasting impact in India
The event was also an opportunity for UNICEF and IKEA to announce an expansion of the global retailer’s support for children — in the form of a $48 million donation for UNICEF programmes in some of India’s most deprived areas.
“IKEA Social Initiative is investing US$48 million in a five-year programme addressing health, nutrition, clean water and sanitation, and the aim is to reach out to more than 80 million children and young people, and more than 10 million women,” said Marianne Barner, head of the initiative, which manages IKEA’s social involvements on a global level.
With this donation, IKEA Social Initiative has become UNICEF’s biggest corporate partner, with total commitments of more than $180 million from 2000 to 2015.
“We are proud to work with UNICEF,” Ms. Barner told the participants in the UN event. “And with their vast experience in delivering results to children and their mothers, we believe our partnership will have a substantial and lasting impact in the lives of many children and their mothers.”
‘Responsibility as global citizens’
By leading the way on the development of corporate partnerships, UNICEF can implement critical long-term programmes to improve children’s well-being.