Home appliance company Whirlpool is providing schools across the country with washers and dryers in hopes of making it easier for students to clean their clothes.
Based off of the insight that students who don’t have access to clean clothing are more likely to skip school, according to Whirlpool, the goal of the initiative is to improve attendance rates.
Called ‘Care Counts’ and created in partnership with DigitasLBi & Ketchum, Whirlpool recently wrapped up a pilot version of the program across 17 schools and found that “after examining the correlation between student attendance and loads of laundry washed and dried, over 90% of tracked students in the first year of the program improved their attendance, averaging 6.1 more days in school than the previous year.”
At-risk students, or those who missed 10 or more days of school in the prior year, attended school nearly two weeks more than they had the year before, according to the brand. Teachers involved in the program also reported increased motivation and better grades amongst students.
“When we learned that a child’s education could be at risk because they do not have access to clean clothes, we were determined to help,” said Whirlpool brand manager Chelsey Lindstrom. “It’s incredible to see how the simple act of laundry can have such a profound impact on students’ lives and we are excited to bring this resource to even more schools across the country.”
The initiative is expected to expand to more than 30 schools in its second year while 300 other schools have expressed an interest in the program, according to Whirlpool.
‘Care Counts’ is part of Whirlpool’s ongoing ‘Every day, care’ campaign, which launched in 2014 and aims to “shift the negative public perceptions of household responsibilities.” Last year, the brand unveiled a number of spots under the ‘Every day, care’ strapline, including a Father’s Day video that celebrates single and stay-at-home dads.
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