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CARE, H&M Conscious Foundation Announce Global Partnership to Empower Women

2013 Josh Estey/CARE
2013 Josh Estey/CARE

H&M Conscious Foundation and the global poverty-fighting organization CARE today launched a three-year partnership to empower women in some of the world’s poorest communities. Through a donation of $9.2 million, H&M Conscious Foundation will support a program designed to empower women economically and within the various relationships that shape their lives.

“The H&M Conscious Foundation is proud to announce CARE to drive one of our programs for change,” said Karl-Johan Persson, H&M’s CEO and board member of the H&M Conscious Foundation. “Together we will invest in actions to empower women in developing countries economically, as we are convinced it is a catalyst for positive change. For example, we are introducing the Lasting Change Fundenabling women in poor communities to start or expand small enterprises.”

CARE was founded in 1945, and is now a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty and providing lifesaving assistance in emergencies. CARE places a special focus on girls and women. “Women and girls are the key to fighting poverty,” said CARE International’s Secretary General Dr. Robert Glasser. “Our six decades of experience has shown us that when you empower a girl or a woman, she transforms not only her own family, but entire communities as well.”

If everyone started from the same place on the path out of poverty, CARE wouldn’t need to focus on girls and women. But that is not the case, and action is needed now:

  • The majority of the world’s poorest people are women and girls.
  • Women work two-thirds of the world’s working hours, but only earn 10 percent of the world’s income.
  • Women own just one percent of the world’s property.

CARE believes this new partnership with the H&M Conscious Foundation will help change these troubling statistics. “The generous commitment and support of H&M Conscious Foundation helps us in fulfilling CARE’s mission and in bringing about lasting change in the lives of many women and girls around the world,” Dr. Glasser said.

With the donation of H&M Conscious Foundation CARE will provide 100,000 women in developing countries access to tools, knowledge and financial resources. CARE also will organize five regional campaigns to raise awareness about the structural hurdles and myths preventing women from reaching their full potential. “Empowerment is not just about providing training or financing to women,” Dr. Glasser said. “It is about helping them to change relationships and social structures that stifle their potential and their capacity to transform their societies. H&M Conscious Foundation shares that vision and together we can work toward transformative change.”

Contact: Sarina Maat, Manager Corporate Relations & Partnerships, CARE Netherlands
maat@carenederland.org Office: +31 70 310 50 33 Mobile: +31 6 1488 48 60

About CARE

Founded in 1945, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty and providing lifesaving assistance in emergencies. CARE places special focus on working alongside poor girls and women because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to help lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. Last year, CARE worked in 84 countries around the world to assist more than 83 million people improve basic health and education, fight hunger, increase access to clean water and sanitation, expand economic opportunity, confront climate change, and recover from disasters.

About the H&M Foundation

The H&M Conscious Foundation is an independent non-profit global foundation initiated in connection with H&M’s 60th anniversary in 2007. The foundation is the philanthropic arm complementing H&M’s sustainability work. Through its support to programs and initiatives, the H&M Conscious Foundation strives to make positive impact on policy level and in the everyday life for people and communities where H&M operates. For further information, visit www.hm.com/consciousfoundation.

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