World Childhood Foundation USA publicly announced that IKEA Foundation is a winner of the Childhood ThankYou Award, to be presented at its annual Gala in New York City. IKEA Foundation was selected to receive the Childhood ThankYou Award for its outstanding achievements in supporting vulnerable children and promoting their rights. The announcement comes on the eve of the United Nations General Assembly.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child gives every child the right to a safe and happy childhood, which is why the World Childhood Foundation is fighting abuse, including sexual abuse, and exploitation of children. This new award was established to recognize the individuals and organizations that are significantly promoting children’s rights worldwide. The IKEA Foundation is being honoured for its extraordinary, longstanding efforts and investments in helping vulnerable children living in poverty and children affected by conflicts in order to ensure they have the opportunity to develop to their full potential. Since 2010, the IKEA Foundation has donated $475 million (EUR 420 million) to help 178 million children in more than 60 countries.
In the presence of Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden, this year’s Gala and Childhood ThankYou Award builds on the momentum created by the ThankYou campaign, a global initiative launched by Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine of Sweden with the goal of building greater awareness about child abuse and exploitation, and to mobilize support for children in need. At the Gala, IKEA Foundation will be honoured alongside Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan and Mrs. Marilyn Carlson Nelson who will receive the ThankYou Award for their work on child protection and fight against human trafficking.
In 2014 alone, IKEA Foundation invested more than $115 million (EUR 103 million) to help children and their families, many of them refugees. IKEA Foundation has changed the lives of thousands of refugee children and families through its groundbreaking partnership with UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) which resulted in the creation of the Better Shelter, an innovative temporary shelter designed for the many people displaced by conflicts and natural disasters all over the world. More recently, IKEA Foundation has committed over $450 million (EUR 400 million) through 2020 to support families and communities who are most impacted by climate change.
“IKEA’s extraordinary commitment and investment in children’s rights and environmental sustainability is unprecedented in the corporate sector. Over the past fifteen years, IKEA and the IKEA Foundation have embarked on improving the situation of vulnerable children in the world showing the way we can help ending the abuse, exploitation, trafficking and violence of children. I hope that the Childhood ThankYou Award will inspire other corporate foundations to follow IKEA’s example and step up their efforts to give more children a chance in life.” Joanna Rubinstein, President and CEO of World Childhood Foundation USA
“IKEA and IKEA Foundation have demonstrated that protecting the most vulnerable members of our society, children, is not only a moral obligation. To be a “good” company means happy employees, happy clients and as a result good business. I hope that more companies will use the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the new Sustainable Development Goals framework as their guiding principles to show that economic growth is not in conflict with social inclusion and environmental sustainability.” Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine of Sweden
“Young people are the torchbearers of the 2030 Agenda for the SDGs. Through its actions, the IKEA Foundation has not only improved the lives of millions and millions of abused and vulnerable children; it has demonstrated the power of partnerships. Together, we can achieve a life of dignity for all children, everywhere.” Amina Mohammed, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Post-2015 Development Planning
“We’re working toward a world where children living in poverty have more opportunities to create a better future for themselves and their families. Funding in crisis areas and tackling climate change are critical to achieving this goal. We are grateful to receive this award. We are asking other businesses and foundations to join us in working towards ensuring a bright and sustainable future for future generations.” Per Heggenes, CEO of the IKEA Foundation
About World Childhood Foundation
World Childhood Foundation was founded in 1999 by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden with the mission to defend children’s rights and to promote better living conditions for vulnerable and exploited children all over the world. To date, the Foundation has provided $100 million in support to over 600 projects in more than 20 countries. With offices in Sweden, Brazil, Germany, and the United States, Childhood focuses on assisting children who are at risk of or are victims of abuse. Our vision is to help create a world where every child is protected from all forms of violence, has the opportunity to realize their development potential and can grow up with memories of a safe and loving childhood.
In recent years, Childhood launched the ThankYou Campaign, a global initiative with the goal of building greater awareness surrounding the issue of abuse and exploitation of children. Under the guidance of Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine of Sweden, the ThankYou platform allows anyone to recognize and thank the individuals who helped them have a happy childhood, and inspires others to be there for a child in need today.
About IKEA Foundation
The IKEA Foundation (Stichting IKEA Foundation) is the philanthropic arm of INGKA Foundation, the owner of the IKEA Group of companies. We aim to improve opportunities for children and youth in some of the world’s poorest communities by funding holistic, long-term programmes that can create substantial, lasting change. The IKEA Foundation works with strong strategic partners applying innovative approaches to achieve large-scale results in four fundamental areas of a child’s life: a place to call home; a healthy start in life; a quality education; and a sustainable family income. Learn more at www.ikeafoundation.org and www.facebook.com/IKEAfoundation