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Mango and Save the Children join forces to promote education and sport in Bangladesh

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Image: Mango Alexia Putellas, courtesy Aisle 8

Mango on Tuesday said it is joining forces with NGO Save the Children to promote education and sport among children and women in Bangladesh.

Alexia Putellas, Mango ambassador and the world’s best female footballer, is also the ambassador of the project, which is called Goals,

Via this project Mango said it aims to contribute to the social and economic development of Bangladesh, the world's second-largest exporter of ready-made garments after China, accounting for around 6.4 percent of global apparel exports. Together with Save the Children the companies will promote learning opportunities in two of the local communities close to several factories Mango works with, in the Daca and Savar regions.

Bangladesh is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a high percentage of people living below the poverty line. Poverty often means that families cannot afford to send their children to school or pay for sports equipment or training. Furthermore, as a patriarchal society where gender roles are strongly defined, women and girls often face discrimination and are not encouraged to pursue education or participate in sports. This is due to cultural beliefs and traditions, as well as limited opportunities and resources.

In stark contrast, Bangladesh is also one of the world's largest manufacturers and exporters of clothing, accounting for a significant portion of the global fashion industry. According to the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), the country's garment exports were worth 34.13 billion dollars in the 2019-20 fiscal year, which is about 84 percent of the country's total export earnings.

The Goals project focuses on promoting access to education and sport through the construction of four primary schools and the promotion of leisure and educational activities. Sport forms the backbone of the programme, which is why in the schools the NGO will develop open-air activities such as football, cricket, a badminton championship for girls aged 10 to 18, and a chess tournament, as well as local games.

Image: Mango Alexia Putellas, courtesy Aisle 8

The initiative, to which the company will donate a total of 500,000 euros, will have a duration of two years and will benefit more than 4,000 people in Bangladesh, half of them minors, placing special emphasis on working women and their daughters, who will make up 70 percent of the beneficiaries. In the second phase, the project will be extended to Turkey.

Toni Ruiz, Mango’s Chief Executive Officer, says that “for Mango it is an honour to work alongside Save the Children and Alexia Putellas on this project, in order to have a real impact on people. Our focus is to work to generate a positive footprint, placing special emphasis on local communities. We firmly believe in the transformative power of education and sport."

Andrés Conde, General Manager of Save the Children, highlights that “in many countries around the world, children face situations that make their life difficult. Education is a very powerful tool to move forward in life and with this alliance with Mango we are going to promote projects to guarantee hundreds of children the quality education they are entitled to.What is more, the power of sport and inspiring people like Alexia Putellas will help us achieve this".

Overall, addressing the lack of education and sport for children and women in Bangladesh requires a multi-faceted approach that includes tackling poverty, promoting gender equality, improving infrastructure, and eradicating child labour. It also requires the involvement of government, civil society, and international organizations to provide resources and support.