Today WarnerMedia announced it will donate more than $400,000 in proceeds generated from sales of branded face masks featuring DC, Wizarding World, Looney Tunes and other iconic WarnerMedia properties to UNICEF’s Global Education Fund.
The donation will support UNICEF education programs to help ensure every child has equitable access to learning opportunities and could help 86,000 children continue their education during times of emergency through the distribution of 2,000 School-in-a-Box kits.
During 2020, as the world grappled with the pandemic, Warner Bros. Consumer Products EMEA joined forces with its licensees to create face masks featuring logos and characters from the DC Universe, the Wizarding World, Looney Tunes and other iconic WarnerMedia properties.
Aligned with WarnerMedia’s commitment to education and closing the digital divide, the donation from the proceeds of these mask sales will now help UNICEF address the far-reaching impacts of COVID-19 on learning. Last year, more than 1 billion students were affected by school closures. Vulnerable and hard-to-reach children continue to be in danger of dropping out of the education system altogether because of significant inequities in access to remote learning widening the education gap.
“We thank our partners for joining with us to create face masks that provided a bit of inspiration – and added safety – during a very challenging time,” said Julian Moon, Senior Vice President, Warner Bros. Consumer Products EMEA. “We are humbled by the response to the masks, and are thrilled to fund a donation to UNICEF’s Global Education Fund that will help children whose learning was impacted.”
As part of UNICEF’s Global Education program, the School-in-a-Box kits have become a part of the standard response in emergencies and used in many back-to-school operations around the world. Containing supplies and materials for a teacher and up to 40 students, the kits help ensure the continuation of children’s education by the first 72 hours of an emergency. WarnerMedia’s donation can also enable UNICEF to collect and transfer online and remote learning resources onto a digital learning platform, which allows out-of-school children to access quality learning opportunities.
“Children around the world are facing a learning crisis and the pandemic is deepening the inequities to education,” said V. Renée Cutting, Chief Philanthropy Officer, UNICEF USA. “However, with the support of companies like WarnerMedia, UNICEF can help ensure that every child has the right to education, no matter the barriers, to prevent a generation from missing out on learning.”
Today there are more children in school than ever before, but in far too many countries, cities and villages, for every child who receives the benefits of quality education, another child misses out. A wide range of factors – including geographic location, economic circumstances, ethnicity, gender, disability, low-quality teaching and schools, lack of access to technology, disruption caused by conflicts and other shocks – prevent millions of children from learning. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated these educational disparities.
The UNESCO Institute for Statistics estimates that more than 258 million children, adolescents and youth are out of school, representing one sixth of the global population of children.