TORONTO, March 8, 2019 /PRNewswire/ – Spin Master Corp. (TSX:TOY; www.spinmaster.com), in partnership with Save the Children (www.savethechildren.ca), continues to inspire change through the Toy Movement (www.thetoymovement.org) with its 15th mission, this time delivering new toys and GUND teddy bears to children in Kenya. Formed in 2014, the Toy Movement has completed missions in Mexico, Israel, Jordan, Turkey, South Africa, Nicaragua, and Iraq bringing the magic of play to children.
“Our goal for the Toy Movement is to help kids be kids, no matter where they live,” said Ronnen Harary, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Spin Master. “Children are great equalizers, full of an abundance of imagination, spirit and innocence. Unfortunately, children faced with conflict or war are being deprived of the basic benefits and joy of play, negatively impacting their lives and generations to come. Through the Toy Movement, we can ensure these children have the chance to experience the joy of play.”
Since 2017, Spin Master and Save the Children have partnered to bring toys to children in emergency situations around the globe. The most recent mission to the Dadaab refugee camp in rural Kenya includes executive leaders and employees from both Spin Master and Save the Children, delivering over 50,000 toys and GUND teddy bears to children living in the camp and host communities.
“This was an emotional and heart-wrenching journey to the Dadaab refugee camp for the Spin Master team members and the Save the Children staff,” said Anton Rabie, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Spin Master. “While on the ground in Kenya, we witnessed the complexities of life for children living in these camps. Subjected to violence, hunger and many other threats, these children don’t have much opportunity to experience the joy of play. Many have never seen or received a toy, and it was a truly magical moment to see the smile on their faces amidst such harsh conditions.”
The innovative partnership is also addressing a critical gap in services for children affected by crisis through providing ‘Child Friendly Spaces’ that allow children to learn, play and recover from the trauma they have experienced in a safe environment. The toys are providing an avenue for children to express their emotions and facilitate conversations with psychosocial support workers.
“Save the Children is pleased to continue our partnership with Spin Master to protect the wellbeing of children in crisis with the gift of play,” said Bill Chambers, President and CEO of Save the Children. “Together, we are advancing the fundamental right to play for children in areas of political conflict and unrest, aiding in their learning and development and ultimately giving kids the chance to just be kids. Something that is so simple, but often overlooked as an inherent right in conflict and crisis settings.”
Kenya is now the second biggest refugee-hosting country in Africa after Ethiopia. As of December 31, 2018, there were 471,724 registered refugees and asylum-seekers in Kenya, 54% of those are between the ages of 0-17.1
Save the Children has been operational in Kenya since the 1950s, providing support to children through developmental and humanitarian relief programs. Current programming focuses on child protection, child rights governance, education, health, HIV/AIDS, livelihoods, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene.
SOURCE Spin Master