INDIA – Twinings, the UK based tea brand has announced that it has secured a five years funding in a partnership with UNICEF, a United Nation’s programme that provides humanitarian and developmental assistance to children and mothers in developing countries.

The funding will be used to improve the living standards of tea workers, especially women and children living on tea estates in north-east India.

In 2010, UNICEF and Twinings entered a partnership to help young girls and women living on tea estates and so far they have reached 34,000 young women by enhancing nutrition, empowerment and child protection.

Twining said that the funding targets to improve the lives of those living in tea communities especially most vulnerable women, adolescents and children living in 63 tea gardens in the state of Assam.

In collaboration with the local government and tea producers, Twinings and UNICEF will work together to provide life skills and basic education, support community level organisations, promote general health care and social protection schemes.

This will be through building the capacity of healthcare staff, child marriage prohibition officers and promoting kitchen gardens.

“Our renewed partnership with UNICEF builds on the successes of the past eight years and represents an even more ambitious programme to improve the standard of living of tea workers, and that of their families, through access to vital basic services such as quality healthcare,” said Twinings CEO Bob Tavener.

The programme will engage both state and national government in a way to improve the living standards of those living and working in the region as a Corporate Social responsibility.

According to Mike Penrose, executive director of UNICEF UK, partnering with organisations like Twinings has greatly contributed to improved, health and safety lives for the children through child protection systems.

“By renewing its support for UNICEF’s work in Assam for a further five years, Twinings has once again proven that it is determined to play its part in helping solve the problems faced by tea communities,” he said.

As a Corporate Social responsibility, Twinings believes that everyone has the right to a decent quality of life and to be able to provide for themselves and their families, something that’s well proven by this partnership.

Twinings Social Impact Report 2016 elaborates the company’s efforts to improve social standards across the tea industry.

It sources its tea from China, India, Kenya and Argentina and does not have tea plantations of its own, ensuring it maintains certain human rights and environmental standards on a global scale.