In November, tesa donated 1 million Euro to Save the Children. "Education connects. Together worldwide." This is the motto with which Save the Children and tesa wish to counteract the increasing inequality in education due to the Corona pandemic. With a donation of 1 million Euro, the company is supporting selected projects in six countries on three continents: Vietnam, China, India, Mexico, Italy, and Germany. Thus, we look forward to reporting from the regions together with Save the Children. Read here how the situation for the two brothers Filippo and Edoardo in Italy has improved thanks to our joint project.
"Rewriting the future" – Save the Children supports kids in Italy
All over the world, there are unequal educational opportunities for children. The Corona pandemic has made this situation even worse. Thanks to the tesa donation, Save the Children could implement the educational program 'Rewriting the future' in Italy. An important part of this initiative are the 25 educational centers of the association 'Punto Luce' spread across the country. The name translates into "point of light". Below here, you’ll find an on-site report that shows where the money is going to when it matters most.
Filippo is eleven years old and lives with his father Luigi and his brother Edoardo – who is nine years older – in a city in southern Italy. The father is currently solely responsible for his two sons, as their mother has been in hospital since last year.
The family's apartment consists of just one room that everyone has to share. They don't own a computer or other technical device with internet access, just one mobile phone. The father receives a 'citizenship income' (Italian: reddito di cittadinanza – a social assistance system with a conditional and not individually guaranteed basic income), which is by no means sufficient to cover the costs of rent, food, and the education of the two boys. The family therefore struggles to make ends meet.
State of emergency due to the Corona pandemic
The Covid-19 pandemic made Edoardo and Filippo's situation even worse: On the one hand, they could neither go to their schools nor meet their friends. On the other hand, they constantly struggled with the worry that their father would not be able to meet the basic needs of the family. The curfews and restrictions exacerbated their already difficult situation, because the apartment was far too small for three persons to spend this many hours, days, and months inside.
During this time Edoardo was helping his younger brother get school supplies and making sure he could use his cellphone to join a class WhatsApp group. Unfortunately, in many cases they did not have sufficient data volume available. Therefore, it was almost impossible for Filippo to keep in constant contact with the school – with the result that some important information was lost. One thing was clear: They couldn't go on like this for very much longer.
Tutoring, counseling, and emotional support
Thanks to generous partners and supporters, such as tesa, Save the Children could implement the educational program 'Rewriting the future' in Italy. An important part of this initiative are the 25 educational centers 'Punto Luce' spread over the large country on the Mediterranean Sea (300,000 square kilometers and 60 million inhabitants).
In these centers, children and young people receive comprehensive support: There are tutoring sessions for disadvantaged boys and girls to catch up on missed learning content. Save the Children offers talks, consultation, and support for young people who are at risk of dropping out of school. An important part of the work includes offering emotional support to children and adolescents as well as their parents through online counseling and personal meetings – a fact that should not be underestimated when dealing with crises.
Furthermore, Save the Children offers digital learning content, provides needy children with the necessary technical equipment for distance learning and organizes leisure activities in the outdoor facilities. For Edoardo and Filippo, the local 'Punto Luce' represented their fixed social point of reference during and after the first lockdown.
Continuous support from Save the Children
The staff at 'Punto Luce' supported the family in many ways. For example, they provided Edoardo and Filippo with a tablet for distance learning and helped their father apply for grocery vouchers provided by the city. This assistance was urgently needed because, despite the financial help from their relatives, the family still had great difficulty in keeping their heads above water.
When the father had to be hospitalized for two weeks due to a sudden illness, the situation got even worse. During this time Edoardo had to take care of his younger brother and the apartment by himself. Save the Children stood by the family in this emergency as well. Edoardo in particular needed emotional support because during this phase he reached his limits and was very worried. Even after the father's return, Save the Children was in close contact with the family and helped them move into a larger and more suitable apartment. In the new environment, the brothers now have better access to local infrastructure. Despite the many difficulties, it is clear that the mood in the family has already improved due to the new housing situation alone.
Thanks to the tablet, Filippo can now dedicate himself more intensively to his education: He learns more diligently, is enthusiastic about distance learning and reliably participates in the online activities organized by 'Punto Luce'. The tablet also increased his motivation, which improved his academic performance.
"I don't know what I would have done without 'Punto Luce'. I cannot provide my children with essentials. I can't work and take care of them and solve other problems at the same time. The people from Save the Children have never let me down. They have helped my kids a great deal. Thanks to Punto Luce, they can continue their education, have food on the table, and sometimes even laugh again," says Luigi.
This kind of support makes Edoardo, Filippo, and Luigi feel like they are not alone. Thus, families in need can be helped effectively and sustainably.
“The people from Save the Children never let me down. They have helped my kids a great deal.”
Euro – The amount of the tesa donation from November 2020 to Save the Children.
The tesa Donation Program
The donation from tesa to 'Save the Children' is part of the Beiersdorf Group's aid program 'Care Beyond Skin'. A few months ago, tesa supported the global Covid-19 crisis operated by 'Doctors Without Borders' with 1 million Euro. Furthermore, tesa is donating EUR 200,000 each to local organizations in seven regions – from Asia to North and Latin America as well as Europe – which the local affiliates have selected. tesa is providing a total of 5 million Euro aimed to relieve the effects of the Corona crisis.
*To protect the identity of the children, adolescents, and their families, their names have been changed.