Press Release: Together We Play
Miniland Dolls Launches Inclusivity Campaign #TogetherWePlay
Miniland USA, TOTY 2022 Finalists and makers social emotional learning toys, including their award-winning Dolls with Down syndrome, has launched a powerful new initiative called Together We Play to encourage acceptance and inclusion among young children.
Together We Play encompasses the Miniland brand’s core values of tolerance, empathy, and representation, further emphasized by partners like the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) and specialty retailer For Kids By Kids (FKBK).
“Together We Play is meant to easily communicate to young children that whoever they are, whatever they look like, they are seen and valued,” said Clara Roque, North America Sales Manager for Miniland USA. “It is crucial for young children to feel like they belong among the other children in their age group, especially at a young age and stage of development. In just one action, play can non-verbally communicate so many impactful messages like ‘you’re welcome here’, ‘I see you’, ‘you belong here’. Inclusive play further reassures children that not only do they have a place in this world, but they should feel encouraged to accept and respect other children who may not look or act like they do.”
Through the hashtag #TogetherWePlay, Miniland will encourage inclusion by hosting exciting giveaways of their diverse Dolls with Down syndrome, sharing valuable tips on how parents can encourage inclusivity, and making donations supporting NDSS. To kick off the campaign, Miniland and FKBK will be donating 100% of the proceeds of Miniland dolls with Down syndrome sold at FKBK from August 29th through September 2nd, 2022. Miniland will further support NDSS by joining fellow sponsors at their annual NYC Buddy Walk on September 17, 2022, as well as making additional donations in October in honor of Down Syndrome Awareness Month.
Through this campaign, Miniland also hopes to shine a spotlight on the profound efforts of both NDSS and FKBK towards creating a more inclusive and welcoming world for individuals with Down syndrome.
“NDSS is thrilled to partner with Miniland and For Kids By Kids to highlight the importance of inclusivity, particularly in the doll market,” said Kandi Pickard, President & CEO of the National Down Syndrome Society. “Representation is incredibly important for our community so we look forward to working together to promote these beautiful dolls with Down syndrome.”
Retailer For Kids By Kids has long been a supporter of NDSS, first partnering with Miniland this time last year with a giveaway of the popular dolls on their Instagram page to raise donations for the organization.
“It was astonishing to see the welcoming response to a doll that is not only made well, but that beautifully represents the Down syndrome community in a realistic and respectful way,” said Alex Rivera, Owner and Operator of FKBK. “Giving back has become the foundation of FKBK, which is why we partner with nonprofits that have a positive impact in children's lives and give back to them through the sale of our items. We are so excited to do our part with Together We Play and hopefully make a meaningful difference in the way children include others.”
For more information on how you can support the Together We Play initiative, head to https://minilandgroup.com/educational/usa/dolls-usa-together-we-play and follow @MinilandDolls on Instagram.
About Miniland Educational/Miniland USA:
Spanish brand Miniland Educational believes that empowering twenty-first-century skills with multiple play experiences encourages children’s social and emotional development in the critical stages of childhood. Inspired by active collaboration, collective creativity, and continual learning and with the support of Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences, whereby intelligence in children is not a single, static quality, Miniland’s array of educational toys and games are made for children ages 0 to 7 to experiment with the world both in and out of the classroom. Miniland Educational’s dolls come in various ethnicities and genders, as well as various hair colors. Their dolls with Down syndrome showcase the sweet facial characteristics of babies with Down syndrome in a realistic and respectful way. In 2021, their DS collection was awarded the prestigious top prize (Gold) for Empowerment by the Play for Change Awards, organized by the TIE (Toy Industries of Europe), the trade association for the European Toy Industry. This past fall, they launched their dolls with hearing implants and dolls with glasses, further adding to their mission of inclusivity and acceptance. The 15” diverse dolls are ideal for ages 10 months and up, and additional accessories and outfits are available for extended play.
The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) is the leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome. Founded in 1979, the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) supports and advocates for the Down syndrome community by focusing on three key areas of programming: Resources & Support, Policy & Advocacy, and Community Engagement. Within these focus areas, NDSS engages in various activities, events, and programs on topics that are critical to our community, such as federal and state advocacy and public policy, health and wellness, education, and employment. NDSS creates resources to support individuals with Down syndrome, their families, and caregivers across the lifespan and hosts awareness and engagement events throughout the country including the National Buddy Walk® Program, the Times Square Video presentation and New York City Buddy Walk®, Racing for 3.21 on World Down Syndrome Day, Run for 3.21, DC Golf Outing, the annual NDSS Gala & Auction, and others.
Born out of love and inspired by her daughters, Alex Rivera’s mission for For Kids By Kids is to make a measurable difference through awareness and action. Their journey started from an idea sparked by Rivera’s oldest daughter, her co-conspirator, and was then infused with inspiration by her youngest daughter, who happens to have Down syndrome. This connection fuels FKBK’s passion for empowerment, inclusion, and awareness. Giving back has become the foundation of FKBK, which is why they choose to partner with nonprofits that have a positive impact in children's lives and give back to them through the sale of their items. They continuously assess their business model and look for ways to increase their social impact. Ultimately, For Kids By Kids is a company with a conscience and a purpose. Their goal is to make this world a better place where every kid feels included, one kid at a time.