In partnership with the National Art Education Association and parent, actor and arts advocate, Kyla Pratt, the online art contest is part of the brand’s ongoing commitment to help students across the nation stick with art.
ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., Nov. 14, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Popsicle believes kids’ imaginations are their greatest superpower and when you unleash imagination, amazing things can happen. After all, Popsicles themselves were invented by a kid at play! However, many students across the U.S. don’t have the opportunity to develop and fully use their imaginations both in and out of the classroom, often due to inequitable funding for arts education programming in schools, leading to what experts are calling the arts education gap.1
To help bridge this arts education gap, Popsicle is partnering with the National Art Education Association (NAEA) and parent, actor, and arts education advocate Kyla Pratt, to champion imaginative play and learning within classrooms and art programs across the nation with the Stick with Art! Contest. Stick with Art! will invite Title 1 art teachers to share their students’ creative, colorful, and imaginative craft stick creations on social media for a chance to win $1,000 to help support the cost of art supplies for their students.
Without a robust arts education, students have less opportunities in school to engage creatively, but the World Economic Forum2 has consistently ranked creativity as one of the most important skills for the job market.3 Popsicle knows the power of creativity, which is why the Stick with Art! Contest is the beginning of Popsicle’s three-year, $500,000 commitment to help bridge the arts education gap through partnerships with expert non-profit organizations in the field.
“Arts education is not an extra-curricular activity; it is crucial and plays a huge role in all our lives,” said Kyla Pratt. “That is why I am so excited to partner with Popsicle and the NAEA to launch the nationwide Stick with Art! Contest to help bridge the arts education gap that many schools face. As a parent, the importance of using your imagination and creativity to create art is an integral part of my family. I can’t wait to see all the craft stick creations imagined for the Popsicle Stick with Art! Contest!”
The NAEA will act as Popsicle’s official non-profit partner supporting the Stick with Art! Contest. Founded in 1947, NAEA champions creative growth and innovation by equitably advancing the tools and resources for high-quality visual arts, design, and media arts education throughout diverse populations and communities of practice.
“As a brand that believes in the power of creativity and imagination, it is an exciting moment to launch the Stick with Art! Contest and Popsicle’s ongoing commitment to help more kids stick with art,” said Russel Lilly, President, Unilever Ice Cream North America. “This program, in partnership with NAEA, will enable art education programs to thrive and give students a dedicated space to flex their creativity and their imaginations, while also providing necessary support to visual arts educators in the face of growing budget challenges. Popsicle is proud to make a meaningful contribution and support programs that will make a real difference for the next generation.”
Although some schools can support an ongoing commitment to arts education, the growing arts education gap doesn’t impact all kids the same.
Since the mid-1980s:
- Black students have experienced a 49% reduction in arts education1
- Hispanic/Latinx students have experienced a 40% reduction in arts education1
- Children from low-income families have experienced a 77% reduction in arts education1
- White students have experienced virtually a 0% reduction in arts education1
To compensate for the lack of funding for art programs in schools, teachers often must purchase supplies out of their own pocket. Studies show that on average, teachers spend $750 each year on classroom supplies.4 Popsicle believes arts education should be accessible to all. That’s why Popsicle created the Stick with Art! Contest– Popsicle wants to help fund the art teachers who nurture our children’s imagination and creativity.
To participate, Title 1 visual arts teachers—who serve under-resourced and diverse communities—will be asked to share their students’ creative, colorful, and imaginative craft stick creations in-feed on their own Instagram. Each submission should be made using the hashtag #StickWithArtContest and tagging @Popsicle and the photo submission should feature the Popsicle stick creation (no students or teachers should be included in photos).
Out of these submissions, 40 teachers will be chosen to win $1,000 to help support the cost of art supplies for their students. These 40 teachers will then be invited to apply for a grant for their school to support the arts by sharing their need for school-wide arts funding and a commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion instructional strategies and access to art for all students. The schools of four teachers will receive $10,000 to support the arts and one lucky teacher’s school will receive $20,000 to support the arts! All winners will be selected by a panel of NAEA representatives and announced in 2023.
“NAEA is excited to partner with Popsicle to advocate for equitable access to visual arts education for students across the country,” said Mario R. Rossero, Executive Director of NAEA. “We work to advance art education every day, and the Stick with Art! Contest furthers this important responsibility by directly supporting the visual arts educators who catalyze student innovation and creative problem solving.”
Through the Stick with Art! Contest, Popsicle looks forward to supporting teachers and schools in sparking students’ imaginations and creativity, and to supporting more equitable access to arts education across the US.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Void where prohibited. The Stick with Art! Contest is sponsored by Conopco, Inc., d/b/a Unilever. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. & D.C., 18+, who are art teachers of a child between the ages of 6 and 18 years of age and have made or are currently planning to make Popsicle stick creations in their class. Begins at 12:00 a.m. ET on 11/14/22 & ends 11:59 p.m. ET on 12/18/22. For official rules, eligibility, odds, limits, prize descriptions, and complete details visit unileversweepsrules.com/popsiclepurpose/.
As a brand invented by an 11-year-old, Popsicle has always created opportunities for kids to play more often and use their imagination, from the vibrant colors and flavors of Popsicle products to the upcycled, back-of-pack craft activities with Popsicle sticks. For more information on Popsicle, visit www.popsicle.com, or follow @Popsicle on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. For product locator, please visit www.popsicle.com/storelocator.
ABOUT UNILEVER NORTH AMERICA
Unilever is one of the world’s leading suppliers of Beauty & Personal Care, Home Care, and Foods & Refreshment products, with sales in over 190 countries and products used by 2.5 billion people every day. We have 149,000 employees and generated sales of €50.7 billion in 2020. Over half of our footprint is in developing and emerging markets. We have around 400 brands found in homes all over the world. In the United States and Canada, the portfolio includes iconic brand such as: Dove, Knorr, Hellmann’s, Lipton, Magnum, Axe, Degree, Dollar Shave Club, Q-tips, Seventh Generation, St. Ives, Suave, TRESemmé, and Vaseline.
Our vision is to be the global leader in sustainable business and to demonstrate how our purpose-led, future-fit business model drives superior performance. We have a long tradition of being a progressive, responsible business. It goes back to the days of our founder William Lever, who launched the world’s first purposeful brand, Sunlight Soap, more than 100 years ago, and it’s at the heart of how we run our company today.
The Unilever Compass, our sustainable business strategy, is set out to help us deliver superior performance and drive sustainable and responsible growth, while:
- improving the health of the planet
- improving people’s health, confidence, and wellbeing
- contributing to a fairer and more socially inclusive world.
While there is still more to do, we are proud to have been recognized in 2020 as a sector leader in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and – for the tenth-consecutive year – as the top ranked company in the 2020 GlobeScan/SustainAbility Sustainability Leaders survey.
For more information on Unilever U.S. and its brands visit: www.unileverusa.com
For more information on Unilever Canada and its brands visit: www.unilever.ca
ABOUT NATIONAL ART EDUCATION ASSOCIATION
The National Art Education Association (NAEA) is the leading professional organization serving art educators in schools, universities, museums, and community settings. Founded in 1947, NAEA champions creative growth and innovation by equitably advancing the tools and resources for high-quality visual arts, design, and media arts education throughout diverse populations and communities of practice.