Formula 1 and UNICEF partner to help the world’s most vulnerable children access quality education and bolster UNICEF’s humanitarian response

Formula 1 has today partnered with UNICEF to help the world’s most vulnerable children access quality education. It will also bolster UNICEF’s humanitarian response around the world, so it can help protect children in emergencies, such as those caught up in the recent earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria.

Formula 1’s support over the next three years could help an estimated 6.5 million children from vulnerable and marginalized communities access quality education, including in key areas such as Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths, (STEM) and enable UNICEF to provide temporary learning places for children in emergencies.

UNICEF’s State of Global Learning Poverty 2022 update estimates that in 2022, 70 per cent of the world’s 10-year-olds lacked basic literacy skills. Limited access to the internet and digital devices, an issue exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has widened inequalities and the digital divide. Those from disadvantaged backgrounds were less likely than their peers to have access to the internet to be able to continue their learning.

A significant focus of the partnership with Formula 1 will be to improve digital access through the expansion of UNICEF’s Learning Passport – a portable digital platform that enables children to continue learning online and offline. The Learning Passport is currently operational in 26 countries. Formula 1’s support will help UNICEF expand the programme to an additional 19 countries and enable the launch of an offline version for children in Mexico and Brazil.

F1 will support the child rights agency’s emergency response efforts through a donation to their Emergency Fund. 

As a global sport reliant on STEM skills, Formula 1’s new partnership with UNICEF builds on its proud history of inspiring in education, with initiatives such as its engineering scholarship programme which will see 50 students fully supported through university by 2025, and ongoing STEM & employment outreach programmes. Formula 1 and UNICEF will use their commitment and innovation to help millions of children to obtain the skills they need to realise their potential and succeed in the workplace.

Stefano Domenicali, President & CEO of Formula 1 said:

“In a sport where research, technology and innovation play a vital role in a driver and team’s success, education is at the core of Formula 1. The partnership with UNICEF will enable us to effectively use our sport’s global platform to help bridge the educational divide experienced by the world’s most vulnerable children. Every child has a right to a quality education and to be protected during emergencies. We are proud that we can play a role in ensuring the most vulnerable children are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need to achieve their goals.”

Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of The UK Committee for UNICEF (UNICEF UK) said:

“The world is facing a growing learning crisis, with millions of children continuing to miss out on school and access to the technology they need to learn and flourish. Investment in education is fundamental to the development of children and young people, and to building the societies and economies they need for the future, so we must act now to prevent this learning crisis. With Formula 1, we are starting a new partnership that will help ensure that more children have access to quality learning and the skills training they need to succeed in school, work and life. At UNICEF, we believe that sports play a unique role in bringing people together, helping us to address the biggest issues affecting children, including those caught up in humanitarian emergencies.”