The alliance between UNICEF and Banco Itaú, one of the world’s largest private banks, has been established to improve the lives of children and young people in Brazil by ensuring their right to a quality education.
Crucial to the success of the partnership has been the involvement of a third organisation, the Center of Studies and Researches in Education (Cenpec), a non-governmental organisation dedicated to developing methodologies, materials for training education professionals and conducting studies and evaluations on education issues. The three organisations came together in 1993 to create and distribute an educational kit, Raizes and Asas (Roots and Wings), which showed how public schools in different Brazilian cities were facing the challenges of providing quality education under adverse circumstances. This unique alliance also created the Itaú -UNICEF award, a biennial award honoring non-governmental organisations working to protect and defend every child’s right to a basic education.
In 1994, Itaú and UNICEF launched PIC/Itau child, an investment and capitalisation plan managed by Banco Itaú, in which part of the profit obtained through this investment by individual investors was converted into monthly contributions to UNICEF over five years. The ultimate objective of this was to ensure continued financial contribution to education projects supported by UNICEF. Since 1994, the PIC-Child Initiative has raised over $14 million for education projects in Brazil.
The latest phase of the plan, known as PIC Criança, will continue until August 2011.