The US$10-million initiative aims to brighten up the future of 1.8 billion children in 195 countries across the world. The fund will be raised from the sales of HEATTECH and ultra light down items during the 2012 fall/winter season.
The program will initially provide support to Bangladesh, China, Philippines and Serbia, with more countries to follow.
Half of the fund, US$5 million, will be donated to UNICEF to provide support to programmes aimed at improving children’s education, through through a global alliance agreement signed between the United Nations Children’s Fund and Uniqlo parent company Fast Retailing.
Uniqlo is asking the public to help not only by purchasing the Uniqlo items but also submitting ideas on how best to invest another US$5 million. Judges will determine projects to be implemented, and the funds will then be allocated accordingly.
The judging panel includes Djokovic; Tadai Ando, Japanese architect and chairman of the Momo-Kaki Orphans Fund; Muhammad Yunus, Bangladeshi banker/economist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient; and Tadashi Yanai, chairman and president of Fast Retailing.
The initiative launched on 16 October, and the deadline for idea submission is 31 December. The announcement of projects to be implemented will be made by early March.