Barbie™ helped fuel children’s dreams with two unique initiatives
2014 was an amazing year of firsts for Barbie™ in Canada. Bringing to life the brand tagline of “Anything is Possible,” Barbie™ launched two unique programs to help fuel Canadian children’s dreams. In July, the first-ever Barbie™ Business Bursary was launched as a national search for Canada’s next generation of budding entrepreneurs. In November, Barbie™ celebrated the holiday season with the Barbie™ Wishes from the Heart campaign, inviting children to submit heartfelt wishes for loved ones, and partnering with Make-A-Wish® Canada to grant wishes to children in need.
Supporting Canada’s Next Gen Entrepreneurs
The first-ever Barbie™ Business Bursary program was introduced to inspire children to not only dream big, but to believe that those dreams can become a reality as part of the debut of the 150th Career Doll, Entrepreneur Barbie®.
Canadians were invited to nominate a budding entrepreneur, under the age of 18, who demonstrates true entrepreneurial spirit. Barbie™ then chose ten outstanding nominees and asked them to submit a video profile that would live on Barbie™ my Dreams. From there, the jury panel selected the three winners and awarded them with the Barbie™ Business Bursary to help fund their big ideas. The jury panel was made up of Canada’s Chief Inspiration Officer, Erica Diamond; Alicia Sumar, Brand Manager, Mattel Canada; and Shelby Walsh, Partner and President of Trend Hunter.
Introducing the 2014 Barbie™ Business Bursary Winners
Abi Smithson of Toronto launched her own footwear collection, Love Sandal, which creates heart-shaped tan lines on women’s feet and was inspired by the unattractive sandal tan her mom had one summer. Abi wants to empower consumers to purchase locally and be actively engaged in the community, showing she is ready to look at the big picture for her business.
Cassidy Allen of Fredericton, New Brunswick hopes to create a modernized version of thrift shopping by developing an app that allows girls to buy and sell previously owned clothing within their community. Her digital savvy idea promotes sustainability and entrepreneurship amongst others, making her standout for her well-rounded approach.
Faith Guppy of Toronto dreams of creating Books for Kids, Made by Kids, which allows children to write and illustrate their own books using their imagination and ideas. Faith’s vision of a business run completely by kids shows she has found a void in the business world and is ready to change it.
“I was so honoured to be a part of Barbie™ Business Bursary jury panel, and to be able to review all of the inspiring nominations that were submitted,” says Erica Diamond. “It’s such a wonderful initiative that is truly helping to make children’s dreams and aspirations come true.”
Wishes from the Heart
The Barbie™ Wishes from the Heart campaign invited Canadian children to visit the Barbie™ My Dreams website to submit a wish for someone in their lives who deserved something extra special for the 2014 holiday season. To encourage Canadians to submit their wishes and share the wishes on social media, Barbie™ donated $1 for each action taken to Make-A-Wish® Canada, for a total of $15,000. Every dollar donated went towards bringing strength and joy to children with life-threatening medical conditions, and helping to fulfill their wishes.
Barbie™ also celebrated the season by granting a number of the wishes submitted online, as well as surprising 25 additional recipients with prizing!
“We were so inspired by the wishes we received during the Barbie Wishes from the Heart campaign,” says Lu Huang, Sr. Marketing Associate, Mattel Canada. “Seeing so many kids put others first was so endearing and truly showed Canada that with Barbie™, anything is possible.”
After a great year of making dreams and wishes come true, Barbie™ looks forward to a “super” 2015 ahead!
The Mattel family of companies (Nasdaq: MAT) is the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and family products. Mattel’s portfolio of best-selling brands includes Barbie®, the most popular fashion doll ever produced, Hot Wheels®, Monster High®, American Girl®, Thomas & Friends® and Fisher-Price® brands, including Little People® and Power Wheels®, MEGA® Brands, including MEGA BLOKS® and RoseArt®, as well as a wide array of entertainment-inspired toy lines. In 2013, Mattel was named one of the “World’s Most Ethical Companies” by Ethisphere Magazine and in 2014 ranked No. 5 on Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s “100 Best Corporate Citizens” list. With worldwide headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., Mattel’s companies employ nearly 30,000 people in 40 countries and territories and sell products in more than 150 nations. At Mattel, we are Creating the Future of Play. Visit us at www.mattel.com, www.facebook.com/mattel or www.twitter.com/mattel.
About Make-A-Wish® Canada
Make-A-Wish Canada is a dynamic wish-granting organization that brings hope, strength and joy to children with life-threatening medical conditions. Along with the national office, eight (8) regional chapters grant magical wishes to children in need from coast to coast. Make-A-Wish Canada is an affiliate of Make-A-Wish® International. Make-A-Wish® is the largest wish-granting organization in the world, making dreams and wishes come true for more than 334,000 children since 1980. For more information, please visit www.makeawish.ca.”