United Colors of Benetton partners with UNFPA to raise awareness of maternal health of women and girls in emergency situations
Treviso, Italy, 27-May-2016 — /EuropaWire/ — Childbearing should always be safe, even in emergencies. This is the message that UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, and United Colors of Benetton are shouting out as they roll-out a joint campaign, “Safe Birth Even Here”, at the World Humanitarian Summit, taking place in Istanbul, Turkey, 23-24 May.
The campaign aims to make women’s health, safety and dignity a global humanitarian priority and mobilize action and funding to support women’s health in all humanitarian operations worldwide. Today, 75 per cent of the world’s people affected by crises are women and children. When disaster strikes, women face increased risks to their health and well-being, due to loss of medical support, trauma, malnutrition and violence. Their vulnerability is even higher in times of pregnancy: 3 in 5 maternal deaths occur in countries affected by, or prone to, conflict or natural disaster.
“Even in peaceful and stable times, it can be difficult to carry a baby and have a safe delivery. But inside a war zone, after a natural disaster, or in a refugee or displaced persons’ camp, being pregnant is truly daunting,” says UNFPA’s Executive Director, Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin. “Our aim is to raise awareness of the huge work that still needs to be done across the world to stop women dying giving life, even in emergencies, as they cannot choose when their babies are born.”
United Colors of Benetton and UNFPA is a natural fit. Since it began operations in 1969, UNFPA has been working to deliver a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person’s potential is fulfilled. United Colors of Benetton’s commitment to social issues has always been central for the brand that, through its communications campaigns and collaborations with leading non-profit organizations, makes the public reflect on social issues of universal relevance.
“All women should be granted universal access to sexual and reproductive healthcare and reproductive rights,” says Chiara Mio, President of Benetton’s Sustainability Committee. Starting from 2016, Benetton Group has focused its sustainability actions on achieving gender equality and empowering women worldwide. Benetton Women Empowerment Program is a long-term initiative aimed at developing concrete projects to provide women with sustainable livelihood, non- discrimination and equal opportunities, quality education, healthcare and the end to all forms of violence.
The creative elements of “Safe Birth Even Here” were conceived and produced by Fabrica, Benetton’s communications research centre, under the auspices of the Women Empowerment Program. The campaign – which will also become an installation – features three artistic images that depict birth in emergency situations and a 30-second video in which a baby is safely delivered into a scene of utter devastation. Besides creating awareness of the health needs of women and girls, especially in crises, “Safe Birth Even here” also aims to raise funds for health supplies, which can be donated through the “Safe Birth Even Here” website.
The campaign will be presented today, 23 May, during a press conference at the World Humanitarian Summit, in Istanbul, by Dr. Osotimehin, Ashley Judd – UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador, Professor Chiara Mio and Gianluca Pastore – Benetton Group Worldwide Communication Director.
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UNFPA is the lead UN agency for delivering a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person’s potential is fulfilled. UNFPA works in over 150 countries and territories to expand the possibilities for women and young people to lead healthy and productive lives.
About Benetton Group and United Colors of Benetton
Benetton Group is one of the best-known fashion companies in the world, present in the most important markets with a network of about 5,000 stores; a responsible group that plans for the future and lives in the present, with a watchful eye to the environment, to human dignity, and to a society in transformation. The Group has a consolidated identity comprised of colour, authentic fashion, quality at democratic prices and passion for its work: these values are reflected in the strong, dynamic personality of the brands United Colors of Benetton and Sisley.
The WE Program (Women Empowerment Program) is a long-term sustainability program by the Benetton Group, aimed at supporting the empowerment of women worldwide. To fulfill the goal of gender equality and women empowerment, Benetton Group has identified five key priorities in accordance with the UN agenda: Sustainable livelihood, Non-discrimination and equal opportunities, Quality education, Healthcare and Fight against violence. Benetton Group tackles these priorities with concrete projects and initiatives around the world.
Fabrica is a communication research centre. It is based in Treviso, Italy, and is an integral part of the Benetton Group. Established in 1994, Fabrica offers young people from around the world a one-year scholarship, accommodation and a round-trip ticket to Italy, enabling a highly diverse group of researchers. The range of disciplines is equally diverse, including design, visual communication, photography, interaction, video, music and journalism. Fabrica is based in a campus centred on a 17th-century villa restored and significantly augmented by renowned Japanese architect Tadao Ando.