News | January 24, 2024
International Day of Education 2024: Sands Highlights its Educational Initiatives to Build the Workforce of the Future
On January 24, the United Nations (UN) observes International Day of Education 2024, in celebration of the role of education for peace and development. The commemoration recognizes the need for high-quality, equitable and accessible education in building more just and peaceful societies, while drawing attention to severe education gaps.
The UN estimates that about 244 million children and adolescents around the world are out of school, and 617 million children and adolescents cannot read and do basic math. Without access to education and learning resources, youth are deprived of basic tools needed to build a pathway to a successful, independent life.
While the need to increase educational support for youth facing barriers is universal, each Sands region customizes its educational engagements to address its community’s unique needs and populations. In support of International Day of Education 2024, Sands is highlighting initiatives to support education in its regions around the world.
Driving Mentorship, Skills Development and Academic Expansion in the United States
In the United States, the company focuses on programs to empower and enrich students from diverse and underserved communities, as well as empowering students to achieve their fullest potential.
Since 2020, Sands has provided annual contributions to 100 Black Men Las Vegas, which aims to improve the education, health and character of youth clients. The Sands Cares engagement provides funding for its primary program, Crossroads, which pairs youth with mentors to develop skillsets in communicating effectively, standing up for their rights and increasing self-esteem. The Sands Cares funding also helped support the nonprofit’s Youth Economic Empowerment Club, which aims to raise financial literacy among youth and help them plan for a secure future.
Sands continues to work with the National Hispanic Institute (NHI), a nonprofit organization that fosters leaders in the Latino community through transformative programs for high school students. Through Sands Cares, the company provided seed funding for NHI to launch its youth leadership development program in Las Vegas. Ongoing support has enabled NHI to build a volunteer alliance for program implementation and provided program scholarships for Las Vegas students. In 2023, the number of Las Vegas students and schools participating in NHI nearly tripled over year one, with 66 students gaining new skillsets and inspiring experiences through the immersive leadership program.
Sands has also played a pivotal role in bringing Young Women’s Leadership Academy (YWLA) to Las Vegas, by helping identify a need and opportunity to establish the charter school for girls from underserved communities, as well as providing financial contributions that enabled technology access for all scholars, facility development, furniture purchases and other school equipment. Last year YWLA accomplished the major milestone of completing its first full school year in May 2023.
As part of its work on Long Island, New York, where Sands hopes to build its next integrated resort if successful in obtaining a Downstate New York gaming license, the company has entrenched on education, mentorship and skills development by creating the Sands Cares Youth Empowerment Initiative. Specifically created for Long Island, the program provides youth with one-of-a-kind, uplifting experiences that inspire them to believe in their potential, explore new possibilities and take pride in their community.
Since its launch, the initiative has featured motivational events including a soccer clinic with pro stars David Beckham and Carli Lloyd, a golf clinic with PGA champion Collin Morikawa, and appearances at youth sporting events by former New York Jet D’Brickashaw Ferguson and 1969 World Series-winning Miracle Met Art Shamsky.
Expanding Support for Underserved Youth and Students with Disabilities in Asia
In Asia, Sands China and Marina Bay Sands provide educational support ranging from investments in educational resources and curriculum to mentorship and skills development.
Sands China has contributed funding to the Bosco Youth Services Network, which the company has supported since 2018, to facilitate tutoring services for students with special educational needs. The company has also made contributions to the Noah Family Mutual Aid Association to support its Magical Colour Clothes Project, which provides young people with broader career paths and enhances public acceptance of young people who have recovered or are recovering from drug addiction.
Sands China also signed a letter of intent with the Macao Education and Youth Bureau (DSEDJ) to develop a new Stage Technology and Event Production Course. Co-organized by Escola Luso-Chinesa Técnico-Profissional under DSEDJ and Sands China, with help from the Macau Productivity and Technology Centre, the course aims to develop skilled talent at the secondary school level. Sands China will provide students with professional assistance and opportunities to practice throughout the course and may extend job offers to participants with outstanding performances.
In Singapore, Marina Bay Sands has supported Care Singapore’s youth mentorship program, which helps at-risk youth in finding paths to success. Since 2021, mentors from Marina Bay Sands have guided mentees by providing perspectives and bonding with students through workshops, volunteer activities and property tours.
Marina Bay Sands also continues to work with long-term partner Cerebral Palsy Alliance Singapore (CPAS). Efforts have included providing underwriting for technology tools used in therapy and education and hosting and sponsoring the annual CPAS charity dinner, which raised more than $430,000 for developmental programs last year.
The resort also renewed its support for students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties through an initiative with the Dyslexia Association of Singapore. Marina Bay Sands will provide funds for 25 students from lower primary levels to attend the association’s intervention-focused programs to aid learners in mathematics.
“Ensuring youth receive the educational opportunities they need to flourish is a fundamental driving force for building thriving communities,” said Ron Reese, senior vice president of global communications and corporate affairs, who oversees corporate responsibility initiatives and the global Sands Cares program. “We are committed to increasing access to learning and development programs for people facing barriers and cultivating tomorrow’s leaders so that all youth in our regions can excel.”
Supporting a strong educational foundation in its communities is part of Sands’ ambition to build the workforce of the future, which parallels its core focus on workforce development in local regions and the hospitality industry. Sands has set a target to contribute $200 million to workforce development initiatives by 2025.
To learn more about Sands’ support for education and workforce development initiatives, read the latest environmental, social and governance report: https://www.sands.com/2022-environmental-social-and-governance-report/