500,000 people reached through our global programs

During our first years, the H&M Foundation and our partners UNICEF, WaterAid and CARE achieved remarkably ambitious goals, reaching hundreds of thousands across the world with quality education, clean water and sanitation and economic empowerment  while successfully pushing these issues to the global agenda.

Global program for Education – with UNICEF

Early childhood presents a window of opportunity that can define a child’s future. Through our global program with UNICEF, we are investing in a better future for the most vulnerable children through early education and care.

The goals we set – and reached

  • Reach 73,600 vulnerable children in poor communities with Early Childhood Development programs.
  • Get Early Childhood Development on 3 national government agendas, making sure these are supported by national budgetary resources.
  • Release first-ever global report on Early Childhood Development, helping in shifting global perceptions of its importance.

“The H&M Foundation were bold, they agreed to take a risk and they weren’t looking to invest in a ready-made recipe.”

– Pia Rebello Britto, UNICEF

global program for water – with wateraid

Lack of clean drinking water and functioning toilets at school affects the lives and futures of millions of children. In 2014, the H&M Foundation and WaterAid initiated a global program for clean water, sanitation, and hygiene education in schools across the world.

The goals we set – and reached

  • Give 250,000 school children access to clean water and toilets, and educate them in hygiene practices.
  • Include clean water, improved hygiene and sanitation in the national policies of 5 nations, supported by concrete plans and resources for implementation.
  • Influence the United Nations to include a goal on water and sanitation in its Sustainable Development Goals, inspiring national and international stakeholders to actively contribute to realizing the target by 2030.

global program for equality – with care

Together with humanitarian organization CARE, the H&M Foundation invests in women’s economic empowerment — equipping women in poor communities with the seed capital and the skills training they need to start up or expand their own businesses.

The goals we set – and reached

  • Reach 100,000 women in poor communities and empower them economically, by giving them access to seed capital and skills training on how to start up and expand their own businesses.
  • Initiate five regional campaigns to raise awareness about the structural challenges women face, and promote women who have overcome these challenges as positive role models.
  • Prepare one global report to advocate for policy change needed worldwide to improve the living conditions for women and girls globally.

Building on the success of the first phase, we have now moved into second gear by identifying barriers for long-term change. We asked our partners what we can do to continue being pioneers, and what success factors we can prove to scale up our positive impact even more. For the coming three years we will keep working in our global programs with UNICEF, WaterAid and CARE.

Related Projects

Global program for Education

Singing songs. Painting pictures. Building with colourful bricks. Evidence shows that the activities that sound like pure fun are the building blocks of lifelong learning. Children who experience love, proper nutrition and protection in a stimulating environment during early childhood become resilient, learn effectively and can help build strong, safe communities and economies when they reach adulthood. Together with UNICEF, the H&M Foundation invests in a better future for the most vulnerable children through early education and care.

Global Program for Water

Across the world, women are forced to waste precious time walking long distances to collect dirty water. Girls are dropping out of school because there are no private toilets, and young children are not surviving to see their fifth birthday because of preventable diseases. The lack of clean drinking water and functioning toilets affects the lives of millions of people. More than 10% of the world’s population still live without safe water to drink and must drink water that can make them sick, and one in three live without a decent toilet. In the Global Program for Water, the H&M Foundation together with WaterAid, worked to change this.

Global Program for Equality

Women and girls around the world are disproportionately affected by poverty and discrimination. In all regions, women spend at least twice as much time as men on unpaid domestic work, but are often not allowed to make decisions that affect their own lives. Women from the poorest communities worldwide reveal enormous potential. Despite difficult circumstances, they can successfully change their own – and their family’s – future. Through H&M Foundation’s global program with CARE, almost 270,000 women were supported 2014-2020. The success of the women has been astounding, with their daily enterprise earnings increasing by an average of 91% across all countries.