Thousands of books for refugee children Biofore Share & Care Programme

4.5.2016 15:00 EEST

UPM and the Association of German Magazine Publishers (Verband Deutscher Zeitschriftenverleger, VDZ) jointly make available to the German Reading Foundation (Stiftung Lesen) reading and storytelling events for refugee children and their families.

Through its Biofore Share & Care programme, UPM not only promotes the development of bioeconomy, but is also committed to the social, economic and ecological welfare of the communities close to its operations. One of our focus areas is the sponsoring of valuable activities in the education sector. Moreover, UPM's business practices meet all aspects relating to sustainable corporate governance. We are guided by the United Nations' sustainable development goals which, in addition to taking action against climate change, include ending poverty and reducing inequality.

The current influx of refugees has brought about a great awareness for these topics among people. The "reading together – living together" initiative that we have launched jointly with VDZ and Stiftung Lesen is designed to be a building block for equal opportunity and a good start for successful education. In this, diversity and equality play an important role for us. We aim to make a valuable contribution to the integration of refugees and, in particular, to support young people. By making reading and storytelling events available to refugee children, we want to give them pleasure and actively support their integration.

"We are very happy to be a partner in the 'reading together – living together' project. Everyone has the right to education. A command of the language is an important prerequisite for this and for successful integration. Moreover, reading helps children to get to know the new world around them. I very much hope that this programme helps the integration of families who had to leave their home countries and I am confident that reading together will make a valuable contribution. Moreover it is just great to see how many volunteers get involved in the project," says Winfried Schaur, Executive Vice President, UPM Paper ENA.

Through our support, 75 reading boxes with 30 books each will be made available throughout Germany. Together with VDZ and Stiftung Lesen, we handed over the first reading boxes at the collective living quarters of Unionhilfswerk in Konrad-Wolf-Straße in Berlin's Lichtenberg neighbourhood in March. They were received with great enthusiasm. More reading boxes are scheduled to be handed over in Augsburg in the middle of May.


About UPM Through the renewing of the bio and forest industries, UPM is building a sustainable future across six business areas: UPM Biorefining, UPM Energy, UPM Raflatac, UPM Paper Asia, UPM Paper Europe and North America and UPM Plywood. Our products are made of renewable raw materials and are recyclable. We serve our customers worldwide. The group employs around 19,600 people and its annual sales are approximately EUR 10 billion. UPM shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki. UPM - The Biofore Company -

The Verband Deutscher Zeitschriftenverleger e.V. is the umbrella organisation of German Magazine Publishers. It comprises three category associations (trade press magazines, confessional magazines and consumer magazines) and five federal-state associations. Its 450 member publishers with over 3,000 magazine titles represent approximately 80% of the German magazine market. As a services organisation, VDZ offers publishers a wide range of consulting, information and other services in all areas of the magazine business (adverts, sales, digital media, legal issues, business administration, environment and paper). As a trade association, it ensures, on a German and European level, that the concerns of magazine publishers are addressed. And, as an employers' association, it negotiates wage agreements for editorial staff on behalf of its federal-state associations. Moreover, through VDZ Akademie, VDZ makes an important contribution to education and further training in the media industry. More information is available on the internet at:,,, www.editorial-media,,

Stiftung Lesen supports reading competence and access to literacy for all age and populations groups across all media. An operational foundation, it works closely with partners – federal and state ministries, scientific institutions, foundations, associations and industry – to carry out research and model projects and other broad-based programmes. Hallmark initiatives include the annual "National Reading Aloud Day", the "World Book Day" and "Start to Read – Three Milestones for Reading", an early infant development programme funded by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research.  The work of Stiftung Lesen is also supported by numerous celebrities acting as Reading Ambassadors. Founded in 1988, Stiftung Lesen is under the patronage of Germany's president, Joachim Gauck. For further information: