Strengthening education, enabling opportunities: "BRIDGE. Educating young people for tomorrow, today".
In late 2023, the BMW Group and UNICEF announced their long-term partnership on the occasion of World Children’s Day. The collaboration, under the slogan BRIDGE. Educating young people for tomorrow, today, aims to equip the younger generation with the skills and knowledge they need in order to succeed in the future. The BMW Group is thus supporting UNICEF’s global goal to reach more than 10 million children and young people worldwide per year through education. This does not only open up personal perspectives for young people. A higher level of education and a wider portfolio of skills also contributes to a stabilized global economy.
After the start in South Africa last year, the collaboration will be extended to Brazil, China, India, Mexico and Thailand over the course of 2024 – all countries in which the BMW Group has locations. The company considers itself a true corporate citizen. With this partnership, as well, the BMW Group wants to be part of the solution.
Focus on education for STEM professions
The focus of the initiative is to create learning and education opportunities in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) – because STEM professions are particularly important: they are the engine of global economic growth. However, millions of these jobs are expected to go unfilled in the future due to a lack of qualifications. Studies show that the problem is particularly acute in low- and middle-income countries and affects girls and women more frequently: nowadays, females remain the minority in STEM education and professions, accounting for just 28 percent of engineering graduates, only 22 percent of workers in the field of AI, and less than a third of employees in the tech sector. Together, UNICEF and the BMW Group are working to reduce the growing inequality in global education.
Long-term engagement with expertise, network and budget
In addition to providing financial support, the BMW Group contributes its expertise and global networks to promote projects that make better learning content and suitable learning environments available locally. The collaboration will support programmes ranging from providing laboratory equipment to developing a customized teacher training curriculum, and from mentorships to job-shadowing. Acquiring the skills and capabilities they need early in life will enable young people worldwide to bridge the gap between school and work, navigate their way around the professional world and help shape its development.
Further aid for children in crisis situations
In addition to its long-term commitment to education in the field of STEM, the BMW Group is also taking measures to help children in current crisis situations. In 2024, the company will use its global network of subsidiaries and the support of stakeholders to raise funds to sustain the work of UNICEF in crisis-hit regions and ensure aid gets through to those who need it most. In view of increasing humanitarian needs due to wars, epidemics and natural disasters, UNICEF is making a significant contribution to teaching children skills to cope with trauma and creating a safe environment in which they can continue learning.
* UNICEF does not endorse any company, brand, product or service.