Since 2011, Gina Tricot has been involved in education for the youngest children of Bangladesh. We support 150 preschools in the districts of Dhaka, Narayanganj and Gazipur and help more than 22,000 children aged 4-5 years to obtain access to education. Gina Tricot is investing nearly SEK 20 million in the project.
Bangladesh has the seventh largest population in the world (around 160 million), yet geographically, it is only about one-third the size of Sweden. The capital city, Dhaka, has an estimated population of more than 12 million.
For school-aged children living in the slum areas of Dhaka, there is a lack of access to basic education. Children from poor families are deprived of their right to education and they become trapped in a vicious cycle of poverty, illiteracy and child labour. UNICEF has been working with the government of Bangladesh to use education as a strategy for gradually abolishing child labour. Offering education at a young age is part of the long-term strategy to prevent child labour.
"In 2012, I had the opportunity, along with our Head of Expansion, Victor Appelqvist, of visiting some of the 150 preschools that Gina Tricot has helped to set up in Dhaka," explains Anna-Karin Wårfors, Head of CSR. "It was a trip filled with many mixed emotions. The schools are small shacks with dirt floors that are centrally located in the slum areas, where many children lack access to education. They were decorated with the work that had been done by the children, along with educational posters that are part of the project. The atmosphere was happy and the children seemed to be really enjoying themselves. There was also a small play corner with toys at each school. Free play is part of the curriculum, as well as reading and writing instruction. Thus far, 8,451 children aged 4-5 years have participated.
We're proud to be a part of helping these children obtain an education. It really feels worthwhile!"