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Syria’s Exiled Children Battle Winter’s Chill

At the Zaatari refugee camp, the heat of summer has given way to cold. ©UNICEF/Jordan-2012/Salah Malkawi

— At the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan, Syria’s exiled children and their families are bracing themselves for the onset of winter. In Jordan’s northern and central regions, temperatures can easily drop below freezing during the winter months, and snowfall is not uncommon. Some of the displaced came prepared when they crossed Syria’s border to reach the camp, while other families came to Jordan with nothing. UNICEF is accelerating plans to winterize the camp and is scaling up assistance to Za’atari’s residents. Still, more help is needed as the temperatures continue to drop.

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World AIDS Day: A Story of Hope

Tselane and her daughter. ©UNICEF/2012/Leonie Marinovich, 2012

— This Saturday is World AIDS Day, and UNICEF and its partners have set an ambitious goal: eliminate new infections among children by 2015. This may seem like a tall order, but it can be done. Women and children will be key partners in this effort. Nearly half of all pregnant women living with HIV in the developing world still do not get the medicines they need to prevent mother-to-child transmission of the virus. This has to change—and fast.

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A New Threat in Syria: Winter

At the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan, where thousands of Syrian refugees are sheltering, the heat of summer has given way to wind, rain and mud. Once winter fully takes hold, temperatures will drop to zero and below. ©UNICEF/Jordan-2012/Salah Malkawi

— Freezing nights in winter are common in the U.S. That’s not a surprise. It turns out winter nights are also freezing in Syria. The days are often wet or snowy there and in other parts of the Middle East, where more than one million children are affected by Syria’s fighting. Now, in addition to facing danger, these children need hats and gloves, blankets and winter clothing. They need warm places to sleep and access to clean water, health care, and cooking supplies. Respiratory infections and other winter illnesses are a particular worry, since many of these children are especially vulnerable to getting sick due to the stress they have endured.

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This Little Piggy Helps Kids


— As shoppers search to find holiday gifts for friends and family this year, many will continue to look for a gift that gives back. This year, it could come in the form of a pig! New this holiday, national home fashions retailer HomeGoods is offering eight styles of limited edition oversized ceramic piggy banks. For each piggy bank purchased at HomeGoods stores until January 31, 2013, HomeGoods will donate 50% of the purchase price to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

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Discover GivingTuesday


— November 27 marks the first ever “Giving Tuesday,” better known as #GivingTuesday. On the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday will be a day dedicated to giving back. Discover is a founding partner of #GivingTuesday and will be offering an extra incentive to its cardmembers who would like to give back today.

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Give a Gift that Gives Back


— UNICEF partners with top brands, offering exclusive items benefiting programs that improve and protect the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children. Here is a selection of UNICEF’s “Gifts that Give Back” from partners offering ways to help this holiday season.

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