Sustainability & Responsibility
Jun 13, 2022

World Day Against Child Labor: Protecting Children Across the Globe

On June 12 we stand proudly with our employees, friends, colleagues and numerous communities in observing World Day Against Child Labor to raise awareness and promote efforts to stop the senseless degradation of youth around the globe. VF Corporation is an ardent advocate for children’s rights and actively works to protect children throughout our footprint in the global apparel and footwear supply chain.

Child rights are the fundamental freedoms and inherent rights of all human beings under 18 years of age. VF promotes the rights and dignity of children to support their development and works to combat factors that compromise their rights, including child labor and beyond.

To strengthen this work, last year VF announced a new Child Rights Pledge and formalized its Child Rights Commitment, inclusive of protocols for prevention, mitigation and remediation of child labor.

Beyond policies, VF Corporation has implemented Worker and Community Development programs at contract supplier factories to advance the safety and prosperity of youth and their families globally. The VF Foundation, a private foundation funded solely by VF Corporation, has likewise funded grants to support child rights programming.

  • UNICEF: To improve access to high quality early childhood development (ECD) services across Bangladesh, The VF Foundation recently committed $250,000 to UNICEF USA. The program aims to train and activate over 3,500 individuals to accelerate and scale EDC program delivery in the highest need communities. This builds on years of collaboration between UNICEF and VF Corporation in support of children’s rights, such as VF’s participation in UNICEF’s Better Business for Children Initiative in Bangladesh and Vietnam and in the Network on Children’s Rights in the Garment and Footwear sector.
  • WeCare China: Since 2018, VF Corporation and The Centre for Child Rights and Business have joined forces to create the WeCare program at VF contract factories in China. The program extends factory-based Parent Worker Support Services to workers and their families in China, with a specific emphasis on migrant workers. Benefits provided include free onsite childcare, summer schools or afterschool programs, nursing rooms, young worker and parent worker training activities, and opportunities to learn how to better communicate with children when living apart.
  • Family Friendly Factory Philippines: The Family Friendly Factory program will be implemented by The Centre for Child Rights and Business in one of VF’s supplying factories in the Philippines to address key child rights challenges that were identified in a child rights risk assessment carried out in 2021. A set of activities have been developed to be implemented in the factory over the course of the program period (2021-2023). Activities and solutions include awareness raising on child rights risks for contract factory management as well as their HR staff and subcontractors, creating a female worker support program around maternity protection and breastfeeding, and a parent worker support program.
  • Community Childcare Cambodia: With the support from VF Corporation, Planète Enfants & Développement will operate community-based childcare centers in villages where factory workers live to provide access to affordable, quality childcare near to their homes. The childcare fees will be partly covered by the parent workers, factories, municipalities, and brands. VF is supporting the opening of several daycare centers in worker communities near VF contract factories. Each center will have the capacity of 25 children from 6 to 36 months, 6 days a week.

VF Corporation has and will continue to drive forward our progress and look for continued opportunities to elevate the rights and wellbeing of children. Like many, we believe children’s rights are human rights. To read more about our work related to human rights and child rights, please visit our website.

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