Every Child gives you a front row seat to UNICEFâ€™s work in the field and highlights some of the contributions, partnerships, and volunteer efforts that make that work possible. Check out the latest issue of the U.S. Fundâ€™s magazine here.
As my colleague, Jen Banbury, and I compile the story list for each issue of Â ’Every Child’, we always learn something new about UNICEF and are continually surprised by the ingenuity and resolve of UNICEF staff.
Take the fight against famine in the Horn of Africa â€” the subject of this issueâ€™s cover feature. It is hard to overstate the severity of this emergency â€” the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today. Despite staggering odds, UNICEF staff members are performing miracles every day in the Horn as they rush therapeutic food, medicines, and vaccines to children who are, in many cases, on the brink of death.
What struck me as I researched this story is how central a role UNICEF has played in battling famines and food crises over the last half century. As UNICEF emergency veteranÂ put it in the feature: â€śFeeding children was how UNICEF startedâ€¦ We should not forget those humble beginnings because thatâ€™s how we originated. UNICEF has always given the nutrition of children and mothers very high priority.â€ť
One episode that really resonated with me (and gets only a brief mention in the feature) occurred in war-torn Sudan in 1989. The country had experienced a horrible famine the year before, and many people had died. To avert another catastrophe, former UNICEF Executive Director James Grant personally negotiated several â€ścorridors of tranquilityâ€ť through which aid could be peaceably transported. He visited the countryâ€™s President and then met with a rebel commander under a mango tree in the desert. Despite initial protests, he persisted and convinced both sides to halt hostilities. As a result, UNICEF and its partners were able get food to those who would have died without it. Itâ€™s a great example of UNICEFâ€™s determination to save kidsâ€™ lives â€” no matter what stands in the way. A similar sense of urgency is on display every day right now in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti as UNICEF works once again to break the grip of famine.
The current issue of ‘Every Child’ has a lot more to offer as well: emergency updates in Haiti, Pakistan, and Japan; a piece about how UNICEF is helping children in newly independent South Sudan; a Q&A with Swazilandâ€™s UNICEF Representative about orphans and vulnerable children; a look at UNICEF-supported communal banks in Bolivia; donor profiles; and much more.
Give it a read and let us know what you think!