The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) has launched a new global education mascot on Tuesday. Named Uni, the mascot will act as an ambassador for learning and will symbolize every child’s right to access quality education.
According to UNICEF, the launch of the new mascot is aimed at highlighting the importance of quality education and drawing attention to the global learning crisis. Uni, a blue colour bag, represents the hope that children and their community get through access to quality learning.
Around 70 per cent of children in low and middle-income countries are deprived of the ability to read and understand a simple written story. Uni is geared towards bringing this current state of education to the fore and inspiring actions to help improve it, said the organisation.
UNICEF has also made a life-size version of the Uni mascot, which has been designed in-house by the agency. Encased in a full-body backpack measuring six-foot, the mascot is made of comforting foam and bright blue felt. The backpack resembles UNICEF’S iconic blue backpacks which were distributed to 1.3 million school children last year.
“Uni embodies our aspiration that every child has the right to go to school and learn. Every child has a right not only to be in school but to learn in school, acquiring the basic skills that are the foundation for higher learning and higher income levels someday,” said Paloma Escudero, UNICEF Global Director of Communication and Advocacy.
The United Nations is organizing the Transforming Education Summit on September 16, 17, and 19 in New York. UNICEF hopes that the Uni mascot will help bring reform in the school systems worldwide.
The summit is being held to underline the global crisis in education, particularly that of inclusion, equity, quality, and relevance. According to the UN, the crisis is often slow and unseen but is taking a toll on the future of children and the youth around the world.