Target Shifts Giving Focus from Education to Health

UNICEF’s Kid Power program is focused on helping kids eat better around the world by providing them with healthy food. Now, they’ve joined forces with Target, who will be adding another dimension to that program: getting kids in America to be more active.

Starting next month, Target will start selling fitness bands for children, which track their footsteps and connect to an app that allows them to track goals. With each purchase of the fitness bands, Target will donated $10 to Kid Power. That money will go toward funding food packets for hungry children. The app that goes with the bands will allow kids to go on “missions” to learn about other countries, and will be able to unlock goals after a certain number of steps, which will in turn result in additional donations to UNICEF.

Target has, until recently, focused it’s corporate giving on education, primarily with their Take Charge of Education program, which will be ending following this school year. They’ve instead decided to move their focus to health and nutrition, which they claim many of their customers are concerned with. They have maintained that they will continue to support, or consider supporting, other education programs with a health element.

The Kid Power program seems like a logical step in their move from education to health giving, as the program was piloted by UNICEF in schools in Boston, Dallas, and New York back in March. With Target’s help, the program is expected to expand into more schools, reaching up to 70,000 students. The two pronged approach is pretty clever, as “gamification,” the introduction of game-like elements to other activities, is a good way to hook kids. Giving them goals, which not only help them but others as well, is a great way to get them interested in taking better care of their own health, and in supporting charity.