There is no doubt that a good education is of paramount importance. But for children who are living in a war-torn country like Ukraine, it can be difficult to get the education they so desperately need and deserve. Children need safe places to learn, grow, challenge themselves, and do their best. That is very difficult to do in a war zone.

But never fear, the LEGO Foundation has recently announced grants totaling $13.4 million to support the education of Ukraine’s children and help all of those who were forced to flee to Romania, Moldova, and other countries because of war. Now children who are displaced or facing difficulties in the broken country of Ukraine can still be educated and move forward with their learning.

The money will be used for all sorts of essential services for children, their families, and their teachers. This is a win-win situation, as there are so many ways that students and their families have been suffering. Working in partnership, the money will be distributed by UNICEF, the Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Collaborative, and Peppy Pals, and coordinated by the Ukraine Education Clusterand Ukraine’s Ministry of Education and Science. These monies will support programs that offer psychological services and other learning opportunities so that the mental health of these young children is cared for in these critical years. Coming on the heels of a worldwide pandemic, the war in Ukraine is really taking a toll, especially on the children.

In times of war, children are often the unintended victims, and the war in Ukraine is no different. Approximately 12.4 million Ukrainians have been displaced, and 3.6 million of them are children. The schools themselves have also been affected. Over 2,300 schools and buildings related to education have been damaged, and 286 destroyed completely. It is nearly impossible to learn when your school has been destroyed, and this money will help bridge the gap while the rebuilding happens.

“One of our priorities is providing the right psychosocial support for all of those involved in the education of children,” said Ukraine minister of education Serhii Shkarlet. “We hope the support provided by the LEGO Foundation will be a significant contribution to ensuring this happens and will help provide effective means to promote the well-being of teachers and children.”

“As we start a new academic year in Ukraine, we must acknowledge how different an experience it will be for many of our children,” said Oksana Roma, LEGO Foundation’s Ukraine country manager. “This donation seeks to ensure the children of Ukraine, either in Ukraine or neighboring countries such as Moldova and Romania, can continue their education despite the severe disruption they have experienced due to the war.”

According to Adnan Zai, Advisor to Berkeley Capital, governments need to step it up a notch to take care of the educational and psychosocial needs of their students. “Providing much needed psychosocial assistance to young children that have been displaced because of war is something governments should be backing and not just corporations.

”Hopefully with the good example from the LEGO Foundation, more governments and organizations can realize the need for monetary assistance for students, teachers, and families. In times of war, society needs to raise the bar to make sure children’s educational needs are being met.