Children

We believe every child should have an opportunity to achieve their potential. Play nurtures and develops the breadth of skills children need to thrive and to solve problems creatively while boosting confidence and resilience. The LEGO Group and the LEGO Foundation work together to be a global force for Learning through Play bringing play to children in need in our communities around the world.

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LEGO critters running playfully down hill

Reaching more children with Learning through Play

Children’s education continues to be impacted by the lasting effects of COVID-19-related school closures and disruption. The need to support Learning through Play through the community is more important than ever. Over the past two years, we have increased the number of community organisations we collaborate with to reach more children. For example, First Book in the U.S., Campfire Circle in Canada, Fondo Unido in Mexico, the Science Centre in Singapore, and Seoul National University Hospital in South Korea have joined our roster of partners.
  • 2019 result
    1,860,000
    children reached
  • 2020 result
    3,229,390
    children reached
  • 2021 result
    3,513,924
    children reached
    2022 target
    6,000,000
    children reached
The LEGO Foundation has a 25% ownership in the LEGO Group, which means that 25% of our profit dividends are contributing to giving all children the chance to learn and play. With the LEGO Foundation and many great partners, we reached over 3.5 million children with Learning through Play activities in 2021. This was nearly 14,000 children above our target set for 2021. Our ambition for 2022 is to reach 6 million children.

Supporting children and families in Ukraine

During 2022, the LEGO Group and the LEGO Foundation have provided support to families and children affected by the war in Ukraine:

  • DKK 110 million (USD 15 million) donated with the Ole Kirk Foundation in March to support UNICEF, Save the Children and Danish Red Cross.
  • 240 refugee children per day visited playrooms established by our employees in Hungary during the month of April.
  • Our warehouse space in Hungary was also given to United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for one month for food and goods.
  • 300+ employees took advantage of additional time off to volunteer collecting relief items and donating toys.
  • DKK 4.3 million (USD 554,000), together with the LEGO Foundation, was allocated to support NGOs partners working with Ukrainian children.
  • USD 1.9 million (DKK 14 million) donated to UNHCR establishment of 29 ‘Blue Dot safe space protection and support hubs’ to provide children and families with critical information and services such as psychosocial support and legal aid.
A jar filled with LEGO bricks, a sad minifigure standing on its head

Building big feelings

Big world events can mean big feelings, and with only 6% of the vocabulary of adults, small children can’t always find the words to express big emotions*.
To help children and families make sense of their emotions, we developed a simple activity – called ‘Build Big Feelings’.

*science.org, theschoolrun.com

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Building a world of play

In February 2022, in celebration of the LEGO Group’s 90th anniversary, the LEGO Foundation announced a USD 143 million (DKK 1 billion) global competition, ‘Build a World of Play Challenge’, to find and fund bold and impactful solutions, focused on early childhood development. Organisations who make a positive impact on the youngest children were welcomed to apply. We received 627 eligible applications across 131 countries, which are under expert review.

Grants will be awarded to those exploring evidence-based solutions to some of the biggest problems of today. This includes access to quality early childhood education and care, adequate nutrition, reduction of violence in homes and communities, protection from pollution, and supporting the social and emotional well-being of the whole family.

Three girls walking into a room

Learning about sustainability through play

Build the Change is a playful, hands-on programme designed to inspire children’s creativity and give them a voice on climate challenges and issues that matter to them. Towards the end of 2021, we launched a Biodiversity & Climate Change resource in collaboration with First Book in the U.S. and in 2022 a new course with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, ‘A Future without Waste’. This course is designed for educators and introduces key concepts of the circular economy such as how we can reduce, reuse and repurpose waste.

In the UK, Build the Change also partnered with Red Nose Day — an annual fundraising campaign to ensure a healthy future for all children — using Learning through Play content to inspire 40,000+ children to design habitats for different animals. It also teamed up with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, to launch ‘Wild Challenge’ educational packs for schools and families which encourage children to get exploring and ideating on ways to make a difference.

Our child-facing Build the Change content continues to connect children to sustainability in safe digital settings including our own LEGO® Life platform, where an Earth Month event took the children through a series of challenges that enabled them to express their passion for protecting the planet and earn eco-hero badges.

Our collaboration with PopJam also continued into 2022, with 22,000 children reached with bitesize educational sustainability content and games.

We’re serious about safe digital play

The LEGO Group wishes to safeguard and empower children, and we leverage the unique position of our brand, products, and experiences to do so. By delivering various digital empowerment programmes and activities for children and families, we enable children to effectively administer their online engagement and identity, and educate them on their digital rights, responsibilities, and own well-being.
A child biting a LEGO DUPLO animal

Product safety

Throughout our 90-year history, children and parents have trusted us to provide safe, high-quality products that meet or even surpass the most rigorous international toy safety regulations and standards. Since 2009, we have had zero product recalls.

Promoting inclusive play

A small girl playing with LEGO Dots

Connecting the DOTS between prosthetics and play

In May 2022, we teamed up with Koalaa – a UK-based company that provides affordable and accessible soft prosthetics – to organise a one-of-a-kind event for children with limb differences.

To celebrate uniqueness and empower users to personalise their prosthetics, we welcomed members of the Koalaa Community to exclusively try out a new product: LEGO® DOTS Stitch-on Patch.

By providing a new way to decorate and celebrate their prosthetics through creative play, the LEGO Group is one step closer towards its ambition of increasing inclusivity, empathy and representation across play experiences and programmes.

MRI scanner made with LEGO bricks

Making MRIs less intimidating for children

Earlier this year, the LEGO Foundation announced a donation of 600 LEGO® MRI Scanners to hospitals worldwide to help children cope with the uncertainty of having a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan.

What started in 2015 as a passion project for LEGO employee Erik Ullerlund Staehr and Odense University Hospital, Denmark, is now being scaled and piloted with new training material for hospital staff worldwide. The team developed the sets to help children navigate the often daunting and intimidating process of having an MRI scan. The LEGO MRI Scanner is developed with a child-centred focus and Learning through Play approach, allowing clinicians to facilitate both role play and dialogue so that the child feels safe, ahead of treatment.

Children playing, one standing in front of a red bucket ready to throw in a ball

LEGO Foundation’s impact in 2021

In 2021, the LEGO Foundation committed over USD 440 million (DKK 3.2 billion) to giving children everywhere opportunities to play and learn – at home, at school or in communities. From supporting the immediate critical needs of children impacted by crises, to driving long-term lasting systemic change through research and education programmes, the LEGO Foundation partners with charities, not-for-profit organisations, governments, research experts and the LEGO Group to make a positive impact on the lives of children in over 32 countries.
LEGO employees playing a twister like game

Play Day

On June 10, for the first time since 2019, our LEGO® colleagues were able to meet in person for a full-scale Play Day – our annual day of celebrating the power of play. With this year marking our 90th anniversary, we took all LEGO colleagues on a journey through time — playing in the past, present, and future. One of the favourite activities was the ‘message to the future’ that we stored in a minifigures’ suitcase and put in a time capsule to be opened in 2032. We had about 21,000 colleagues attend Play Day activities across more than 30 countries – a record breaking number!
To LEGO employees volunteering at World Pride in Copenhagen

Ambassadors for Learning through Play

Throughout the year, we inspire and support our colleagues to get engaged in Learning through Play in various ways. We train them as Play Agents, offer Play Activities to integrate in the workday and equip colleagues to bring Learning through Play to children in their communities. We give all our employees the option to take two days off a year to participate in volunteering activities. COVID-19 restrictions continued to impact the level of volunteering throughout 2022, but 2,307 colleagues supported local communities with Build the Change events and bringing other Learning through Play experiences and joy to children.