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[National]  IKEA Dublin customers show their ‘soft side’ & raised €56,907 for UNICEF Ireland
27 February 2012: UNICEF Ireland today annouced that thanks to the generosity of IKEA Dublin customers and the support of IKEA Dublin co-workers, over €56,000 was raised by the annual IKEA Soft Toy Campaign for UNICEF Ireland.

Showing their ‘soft side’, IKEA Dublin donated €1 to UNICEF Ireland for every soft toy, kid’s meal or children’s book purchased between October 24th and December 23rd 2011. This notable donation from Ireland will now help support eighteen UNICEF educational projects in seven African countries and two projects in Russia and China.

Teddy bears and cuddly toys of all shapes and sizes came out to play in IKEA Dublin during November and December as the campaign got underway. The appeal was supported by UNICEF Ireland Ambassadors Donncha O’Callaghan & Dustin the Turkey (view their video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TwRYGDSKjfk ), as well as co-workers and customers, who participated in a variety of money raising teddy bear themed adventures. During the 2011 campaign the “Give Twice” incentive was introduced, allowing customers to double their support for charity by donating their soft toys to a number of local charities.

Paul Reid, Store Manager, IKEA Dublin said: “IKEA Dublin would like to say a big thank you to all our customers for their support and generous contribution to the IKEA Soft Toy Campaign 2011. It is a great way for everyone to contribute not only to the local community but also to thousands of children across the globe’.

Peter Power, Executive Director of UNICEF Ireland, said “Today, as we announce the success of our 2011 Soft Toy Campaign with IKEA Dublin, I would like to express our appreciation and gratitude to IKEA co-workers and IKEA customers in Ireland for making the campaign such a success. Because of your generosity and the support and generosity of IKEA customers and stores across the world, 5.5 million children in Africa will now receive a better education. In the last three years, over €150,000 has been raised here in Ireland through the Soft Toy Appeal for UNICEF’s work and these incredible results make us very proud of this partnership."

Globally, the 2011 UNICEF, Save the Children and the IKEA Soft Toy Campaign raised a total of €12.4 million for UNICEF. Since the partnership began in 2003, it has raised just over €47.6 million which has helped improve the lives of more than eight million children in 45 countries. With this year’s additional donation, even more children are now being given the most precious gift of all – the right to an education
For further information, please contact:
IKEANorman PrattWeber Shandwick Tel: 01-6760168Mob: 0861518921

UNICEFJulianne SavageUNICEF IrelandTel. 087 669 4510julianne@unicef.ie
About:
About the IKEA Foundation
The IKEA Foundation aims to improve the opportunities for children and youth by funding holistic, long-term programmes that can create substantial, lasting change, and enable them to take charge of their own future. We work with strong strategic partners applying innovative approaches to achieve large-scale results in four fundamental areas of a child’s life. Currently funded programmes benefit an estimated 100 million children. Learn more at www.ikeafoundation.org

About IKEAIKEA is a home furnishings company with Swedish origins founded in 1943 by Ingvar Kamprad. The IKEA vision is to ‘create a better everyday life for the many people.’ The business idea is to offer a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishings at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them. IKEA has a total of 320 stores in 38 countries/territories, of which 37 stores are owned and run by franchisees outside the IKEA Group. The IKEA Group stores welcomed a total of 626 million visitors last year. Please visit www.ikea.com

About UNICEFUNICEF has saved more children's lives than any other humanitarian organisation in the world. Working in more than 150 countries, UNICEF provides children with health and immunisations, clean water, nutrition, education, protection as well as emergency and disaster relief. UNICEF Ireland supports UNICEF's work through fundraising, advocacy, and education in Ireland. Completely funded by voluntary donations, UNICEF is at the forefront of efforts to reduce child mortality worldwide. There has been substantial progress: the annual number of under-five deaths dropped from more than 12 million in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010. But still, 21,000 children die each day from preventable causes. UNICEF’s mission is to do whatever it takes to make that number zero by giving children the essentials for a safe and healthy childhood. For more information, please visit www.unicef.ie

100 million.

Estimated number of children the IKEA social projects in partnership with UNICEF, UNDP and Save the Children will have benefited by the end of 2015.

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