Unicef and the Lego Foundation have launched an initiative in Jordan to help young Syrian refugee children living in the country and local children. The goal: To help the youngsters learn through play, Lego brick by Lego brick.
Over 145,000 children in Jordan will be able to take part in a "learning through play"-project thanks to a partnership between the Lego Foundation and Unicef, the UN agency has announced in a statement. Thousands of boxes with Lego play materials have been distributed in schools and support centers throughout the country.
Robert Jenkins, Unicef's representative in Jordan, said that "the support from the Lego Foundation to Unicef is helping children and their parents from vulnerable districts and Syrian refugees." He added that the partnership promoted not just "quality learning," but also offered "psychosocial support."
Playing fundamental for development
"Play is paramount for all children's healthy development and fostering the breadth of skills they need to navigate a complex and uncertain world," said Sarah Bouchie, who works for the Lego Foundation as head of Learning through Play in Early Childhood. "We know that play is a critical means for alleviating trauma and building resilience, and that engaging in play-based activities with responsive caregivers will ultimately help to give vulnerable children a better path forward."
In addition to the donation of Lego bricks, over 1,000 teachers and educators are being trained in play-based methods to help children develop a broad set of skills, Unicef said.