Martin Rendón is the Vice President for Public Policy & Advocacy at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.
Those of us who Believe in Zero – no child dying from causes we can prevent – know that the United States Government plays a key role in saving the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children and their mothers.
In addition to the U.S. partnership with UNICEF, government collaboration with Rotary International is leading the world to the brink of eliminating polio; work with Kiwanis International has saved millions of children from mental retardation associated with iodine deficiency disorders and is now focused on virtually eliminating maternal and neonatal tetanus from the 38 countries still affected by this agonizing and fatal disease; and joint efforts with the American Red Cross have dramatically cut preventable child deaths from measles, to cite just a few examples.
The U.S. Government, international agencies, non-governmental organizations, service clubs, and the donations of millions of American citizens are working together to make a difference – and achieving measurable results.
Nevertheless, U.S. Federal funding for these lifesaving global efforts is in jeopardy. While it is clear that our Nation needs to reduce the Federal budget deficit, most Americans do not want the small but vital child survival and maternal health programs put on the chopping block. We need to let our Senators and Representatives know that Americans care about this essential funding. They need to know you care!
Executives from leading child survival organizations have joined Caryl M. Stern, the President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, in an appeal to Congress to maintain our American commitment to helping the world’s children and their mothers. Your legislators need to hear that you are standing with Caryl and her colleagues. Please take a minute to add your name to the Joint Statement on U.S. Funding for Global Child Survival and Maternal Health. Don’t stop there – share this statement with your families, your neighbors, your communities. Remind the decision-makers that children in need know no politics.
Help be their voice in Washington!