TUCSON, Ariz., – June 2, 2022 — Today, Learning A-Z®, a Cambium Learning Group company, in collaboration with UNICEF Kid Power®, a program of UNICEF USA, announced the success of its donation drive to support Ukrainian children.
For one week, students were able to donate the stars earned by reading books and completing learning activities on the Learning A-Z platforms to support UNICEF’s efforts for the children and families of Ukraine. For every 50,000 stars donated, UNICEF can provide 50 children in Ukraine with access to an Early Childhood Development Education Kit.
“Empathy begins with understanding,” said Lisa O’Masta, president of Learning A-Z. “This donation drive starts the conversation of understanding and gives the chance to make a difference that doesn’t stop with students in Ukraine, feeding families in the US, or providing clean water to other countries. It helps students ask more questions, understand why things are happening, and question what role they can play in making life better for others. Teaching students they can positively impact our world is a wonderful gift.”
In total, students around the world enthusiastically donated over 313,000 Learning A-Z stars, resulting in support for over 6,278 Ukrainian children with access to Early Childhood Development Education Kits. Learning A-Z students surpassed their goal of providing access to the kits to 2,500 Ukrainian children in just two days of donating. On average, students who participated in the star donation drive read three times more books, advanced in reading levels more quickly, and showed much higher engagement than students in classrooms that did not participate in the donation challenge.
“Social media and technology can be a tool for positive engagement, and no one knows that better than students,” said O’Masta. “Students are seeing kids just like them suffering in Ukraine and want to help but might not know how to get started. This donation drive isn’t simply about expressing empathy, but also empowering students to help children and families in Ukraine. Students want to make an impact, and what better way to do so than through their own joy of learning?”
Distributed through UNICEF and UNHCR’s jointly established Blue Dot safe spaces and other distribution channels, Early Childhood Development Education Kits contain items such as stuffed animals, toys, games, puzzles, and school supplies, as well as hygiene and caregiver materials. Located at key points along border crossings in neighboring countries, Blue Dot hubs provide children a safe, welcoming place to rest, play, and simply be a kid at a time when their world has been abruptly turned upside down.
“We’ve seen a tremendous number of youth who are eager to help the children and families of Ukraine and have felt compelled to take action; and now, they can,” said Wendy Zachrisen, Senior Director of Strategic Planning and Operations at UNICEF Kid Power. “Learning A-Z students have been so generous throughout all of our donation campaigns, and I can’t think of a better way for all of us to end the school year together than by spreading even more compassion and kindness through helping the children of Ukraine.”
UNICEF Kid Power and Learning A-Z have collaborated on previous donation drives to help families in need worldwide access healthy meals and clean water. The most recent donation drive took place in March 2022 and resulted in students donating 111,899 healthy meals distributed in the United States and 1,175,440 days of clean water donated to communities worldwide.
About Learning A-Z
Learning A-Z® delivers pre-K–6 solutions that inspire curiosity, ensure comprehension, and instill the joy of learning in elementary students. Its award-winning digital products, which include Reading A-Z® and Raz-Kids®, are used by more than 12 million students in more than 170 countries. Learning A-Z is a Cambium Learning®Group company.
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to pursue a more equitable world for every child. UNICEF has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief, and more.
UNICEF USA advances the global mission of UNICEF by rallying the American public to support the world’s most vulnerable children. Together, we are working toward a world that upholds the rights of all children and helps every child thrive. For more information, visit www.unicefusa.org.
About UNICEF Kid Power
UNICEF Kid Power, a program of UNICEF USA, is a free interactive video platform that helps children discover how their everyday activities — such as moving and learning — can make a difference in the world. As children interact with Kid Power Up videos, they unlock critical support that UNICEF and its partners distribute to children who need extra support in our global and local communities. To learn more, visit www.UnicefKidPower.org.
About Cambium Learning Group
Cambium Learning® Group is the education essentials company, providing award-winning education technology and services across the K-12 space. With an intentionally curated portfolio of respected global brands, Cambium serves as an education leader, helping millions of educators and students feel more universally seen, valued, and supported. In everything it does, the company focuses on the elements that are most essential to the success of education, delivering simpler, more certain solutions that make a meaningful difference right now. To learn more, visit www.cambiumlearning.com or follow Cambium on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Medium. The Cambium family of brands includes Cambium Assessment, Lexia® Learning, Learning A-Z®, Voyager Sopris Learning®, ExploreLearning®, Time4Learning®, and Kurzweil Education®.
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