Washington D.C./ Billund, Denmark, January 10, 2022 – The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) welcomed 100 million Danish Kroner (approximately US$15 million) in new pledges today from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark and the LEGO Foundation.
The new funding will go to GPE’s Girls’ Education Accelerator, a specialized fund dedicated to getting more girls into school and learning. The Girls’ Education Accelerator is part of GPE’s new strategic plan, GPE 2025, which seeks to transform education systems and advance gender equality.
Denmark and the LEGO Foundation announced their respective DKK 50 million (approximately $8 million) pledges during an online event on achieving gender equality through increased investments in girls’ education.
“I am proud to announce a Danish contribution of 50 million DKK to GPE’s new financing mechanism for girls education in poor and often fragile countries, lacking the most behind. And I am in particular proud to say that the contribution is matched by LEGO Foundation as part of our joint efforts to advance gender equality in and through education. This initiative is a concrete example of Denmark’s wish to mobilize increased financing through public-private partnerships as part of our new development strategy,” said Flemming Møller Mortensen, Minister of Development Cooperation of Denmark.
The new pledge from the LEGO Foundation – GPE's largest foundation donor - adds to the US$7 million it committed at the Global Education Summit in July 2021, bringing its total commitment to the Girls Education Accelerator to $15 million. This marks a strong engagement from foundations in supporting GPE’s work towards equal education opportunities for all girls and boys. Through the GPE Match, GPE will double the LEGO Foundation’s pledge, magnifying the impact of the foundation’s contribution on getting more girls into school and learning. The GPE Match is an incentive mechanism that matches contributions from the business community or foundations.
“At the LEGO Foundation, we believe that all children have the right to quality education and the opportunity to learn through play,” said Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen, Chief Executive Officer of the LEGO Foundation. “In many parts of the world, there is a need for a special focus on girls’ access to quality education. With this joint commitment to the Girls’ Education Accelerator, we can help make a real impact on girls’ lives.”
“This new funding comes at a critical time for girls’ education,” said Alice Albright, Chief Executive Officer of GPE. “An estimated 20 million girls may drop out permanently because of the pandemic, with the latest variant likely to make this bleak situation far worse. This landmark matching contribution from Denmark and the LEGO Foundation illustrates the power of partnership to spur transformative change so that millions of girls can get back into the classroom and get 12 years of quality education.”
The new contributions from Denmark and the LEGO Foundation bring the total amount of funding available in the Girls’ Education Accelerator to $176 million. Created in December 2020, the Girls’ Education Accelerator provides resources to support girls’ education in 30 countries where girls lag behind boys in accessing primary and lower secondary school and where early marriage rates are the highest.
Notes to editors
In July 2021 in London, the Global Education Summit co-hosted by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, raised a record US$4 billion for GPE from donors. The fundraising total puts GPE firmly on the path to achieving its target of at least $5 billion, which will enable up to 175 million children to learn and help get 88 million more girls and boys in school by 2025.
About the LEGO Foundation
The LEGO Foundation aims to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow; a mission that it shares with the LEGO Group. The LEGO Foundation is dedicated to building a future where learning through play empowers children to become creative, engaged, lifelong learners. Its work is about re-defining play and re-imagining learning. In collaboration with thought leaders, influencers, educators and parents the LEGO Foundation aims to equip, inspire and activate champions for play.
About the Global Partnership for Education
GPE is a shared commitment to ending the world’s learning crisis. We mobilize partners and funds to support 76 lower-income countries to transform their education systems so that every girl and boy can get the quality education they need to unlock their full potential and contribute to building a better world.