Wella Professionals and UNICEF: The Hairdressing Training Centre in Focsani – a very good example of public/private partnership for the benefit of vulnerable adolescentsFOCSANI, Romania, 3 September 2013 - The official opening of the Hairdressing Training Centre in Focsani took place in the presence of Dragoș Bârlădeanu, the Vice-president of Vrancea County Council, Sandie Blanchet, UNICEF Representative in Romania, and Mehdi Shili, Project Manager Wella.
UNICEF Romania / 2013
Wella Professionals, a leading professional hair brand, is working with UNICEF, the world’s leading children’s organisation, to give vulnerable young people a brighter future through life skills education, hairdressing training and mentoring.
“The Wella & UNICEF Making Waves initiative is something that really excites all of us at Wella. As a leading professional hair brand, we believe we have a responsibility to give back not only to the industry, but also to wider society. With this program, we have an amazing opportunity to share our skills, creativity and passion and make a real difference to young people’s lives,” said Sylvie Moreau, Global General Manager Wella.
“This initiative is an excellent example of public – private partnership for the benefit of the most vulnerable adolescents, helping them break the cycle of disadvantage. UNICEF considers that vocational training is part of inclusive and quality education and that it can contribute to promote youth employment,” said Sandie Blanchet, UNICEF Representative in Romania. “Wella supports this initiative with more than money: it provides the know-how and mentoring the vulnerable adolescents need to become professionals and build themselves brighter futures,” added Sandie.
The mentoring element of this innovative partnership between Wella and UNICEF involves hairdressers from around the world travelling to training centres in Romania and Brazil to share their hairdressing knowledge and skills with young people with the aim of helping them build a career in hairdressing.
UNICEF Romania / 2013
“I’m delighted that the first training center organized by UNICEF and Wella in Romania is opened in Focsani, giving vulnerable young people from our county the chance to become professionals and build a better live for themselves. The opening of the center here is also a recognition of the fact that the Vrancea authorities are dedicated to help the most vulnerable children”, said Dragoș Bârlădeanu, the Vice-president of Vrancea County Council.
According to EU data, some 40 per cent of children in Romania are living in poverty or at risk of poverty. Like in many other European countries, employment is a key issue for young people. Around 22 per cent of adolescents and youths aged 15 to 24 are unemployed. Romania registers a high and increasing share of young people neither in employment, nor in education and training (16.8 per cent in 2012). This Making Waves initiative is part of UNICEF’s work in Romania to increase access to quality education, protect vulnerable children from violence and abuse and promote a healthy lifestyle and a second chance among vulnerable adolescents. Funding from Wella supports the UNICEF model of community based services in over 30 communities, as well as the training centre in Focsani. Every year, some 20 vulnerable adolescents in public care or from very poor families are expected to benefit from this training.
About the Wella & UNICEF Partnership
The Wella & UNICEF Making Waves partnership has already helped to train 7,000 young people in Brazil in a range of life skills, to help them improve their learning capacity, to prepare them for the labour market and to enable them to make more informed choices about their future.
To find out more about the Wella & UNICEF Making Waves programme, visit: www.wella.com/wella-unicef or www.facebook.com/wellainternational. More information about the UNICEF Initiative First priority: No Invisible Children is available at: http://www.unicef.ro/ce-facem/initiative/prima-prioritate-niciun-copil-invizibil/.
UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.
For more information about UNICEF and its work in Romania, please visit: www.unicef.ro
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