UNICEF Presents Its 2012 Holiday Card And Gift Collection

Jul 10, 2012, 12:49 ET from U.S. Fund for UNICEF

Holiday shoppers can make a difference in the lives of children this season by purchasing an item from UNICEF's latest collection

NEW YORK, July 10, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Wooden bowls and servers hand-crafted in India from sustainable mango wood are just one of a variety of holiday gift items offered in UNICEF's 2012 cards and gifts collection. Where and how some of these items are made are just part of what makes them so unique. These products benefit the world's most vulnerable children, and are helping to keep artisans' traditions and communities alive.

Each year, the U.S. Fund for UNICEF offers holiday shoppers an array of holiday cards and gifts, as well as a lineup of exclusive products sold in partnership with top brands to benefit UNICEF's lifesaving programs for children across the globe. For millions of children in developing countries, a gift purchased from UNICEF's holiday collection means supporting programs that improve and protect lives.

UNICEF's Cards and Gifts Collection
This year's collection features gifts for people of all ages, including an Acai Necklace, Balinese Wooden Bells, Wooden School Bus with accompanying figurines, Pocket Planner and Thai Elephant Ornaments. A portion of sales from each item in the collection will support UNICEF's programs in more than 150 countries worldwide. To shop online or to learn more about UNICEF programs visit www.unicefusa.org.

In addition, UNICEF boxed cards (from $10 to $20) can be purchased online at www.unicefusa.org starting in August. Beginning in October, UNICEF boxed cards will also be available at Pier 1 Imports, IKEA, Barnes and Noble and select Hallmark Gold Crown stores.  Individual holiday cards (ranging in price from $2.50 to $5.99) will be sold at Barnes and Noble and select Hallmark Gold Crown stores.

Inspired Gifts
For shoppers looking to make a bigger impact this season, actual lifesaving supplies that can make an immediate and dramatic difference in the lives of children in need are available for purchase. These Inspired Gifts include lifesaving items such as: therapeutic milk for malnourished children, much needed medical supplies, polio and measles vaccines to keep children healthy, mosquito nets to keep children safe from Malaria, notebooks and pencils for schools, hand pumps to ensure safe drinking water and a winter child survival pack and sturdy tents for emergency shelter. To learn more and to select a lifesaving gift in honor of a loved one this holiday season, visit www.inspiredgifts.org.

Partner companies that will conduct holiday activities supporting UNICEF in 2012 include:

IKEA "Soft Toys for Education"
IKEA continues its long-standing partnership with UNICEF by helping to provide children with access to a quality education through the "Soft Toys for Education" Holiday campaign.  From Nov. 1 – Dec.  24, with every "Soft Toys for Education" collection purchase and associated children's books, the IKEA Foundation will donate one euro (approximately $1.30) to support UNICEF and Save the Children global education programs, including support for UNICEF's "Schools for Africa" initiative across seven of Africa's poorest countries - contributing to helping more than 5.5 million children access a quality education. In 2012, the expanded soft toy collection includes a new dancing ballerina pig, spotted leopard, a grey circus seal and other colorful soft toys. Through the more than $61.75 million generated since 2003, the "Soft Toys for Education" campaign has helped over eight million children in almost 40 countries access a quality education. For more information, visit www.ikeafoundation.org.

The IKEA campaign benefits UNICEF's "Schools for Africa" initiative, which aims to provide millions of children with access to a quality education. With 43 percent of the world's 67 million out-of-school children in Sub-Saharan Africa, this initiative is helping to provide some of Africa's poorest children with the best possible start in life and helping to equip them with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to shape better futures for themselves and their communities.

Delta Air Lines
SkyMiles® members can donate miles to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. SkyMiles members can visit the link below to donate miles and find more information: www.delta.com/skywish.

There are a variety of other ways that individuals can give back this Holiday season including through the support of:

Pier 1 Imports
This year's holiday collection includes the winning design from the annual Pier 1 Imports/UNICEF Greeting Card Contest. Designed by Kristen Fontana – age 12 from Staten Island, New York – the holiday card features children from countries throughout the world holding hands around a tree as a symbol of universal peace during the holiday season.

One hundred percent of the proceeds from the sale of all UNICEF cards sold at U.S. Pier 1 Imports stores during the 2012 holiday season will go to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF to support UNICEF programs that provide lifesaving medicines, vaccines, nutritious foods, primary education, clean water and sanitation and emergency relief for millions of children and women in more than 150 countries.

Pier 1 Imports began selling UNICEF greeting cards in 1985.  During its successful 27-year partnership, Pier 1 has raised more than $30 million for UNICEF. Last fall, UNICEF received thousands of entries from kids around the country who submitted their drawings for the 2012 annual Pier 1 Imports/UNICEF Greeting Card Contest. The initiative began in 1992 as a way to help raise awareness among U.S. school children about UNICEF's work for kids around the world.

K.I.N.D. (Kids in Need of Desks)
MSNBC's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell has partnered with the U.S. Fund for UNICEF in an ambitious campaign called K.I.N.D.: Kids in Need of Desks to provide tens of thousands of desks to hundreds of schools in Malawi. By making a tax-deductible donation to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF today, you can pick one or more students up off the ground and help pave their way to a better education and brighter future. A gift of $32.50 can provide one student with a seat. A gift of $65 will buy a desk and bench for two students. A gift of $975 will furnish an entire class of 30. For more information please visit www.unicefusa.org\kind.

UNICEF has saved more children's lives than any other humanitarian organization in the world. Working in more than 150 countries, UNICEF provides children with health care, clean water, nutrition, education, emergency relief, and more. The U.S. Fund for UNICEF supports UNICEF's work through fundraising, advocacy, and education in the United States.

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. Our 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, visit www.unicefusa.org.