National UNICEF Day FAQs | UNICEF Canada: For Every Child Skip to main content

1. What is National UNICEF Day?

National UNICEF Day (formerly known as Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF), a Halloween tradition beloved by generations, is one of Canada's longest-running youth fundraising activities and often a child's first philanthropic experience. Initially, the program involved the Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF boxes but the program has evolved over the years into in-school fundraising. Children across Canada raise funds to improve the lives of their most vulnerable peers around the world. At UNICEF, we believe that when it comes to saving children’s lives, no child is too far.

2. When is National UNICEF Day?

National UNICEF Day is on October 31.

3. Why should we support National UNICEF Day?

National UNICEF Day is a chance for Canadian students to come together to raise funds for children around the world who rely on UNICEF’s support to provide critical resources such as education. Every donation has the capacity to significantly change a child’s life, for example:

  • $33 provides pencils for a school
  • $209 provides a bicycle, allowing a child to get to school faster and fetch clean water
  • $530 provides a community water pump

4. Where do my fundraising dollars go?

Money raised goes towards helping children around the world get access to a quality education. With your support, we’re helping create strong education systems for generation to comes, building schools, training teachers, advocating for girl’s education and reaching children who have to work or whose lives have been disrupted by emergencies.

Canadians have raised more than $100 million through National UNICEF Day to help children worldwide. With nearly 59 million primary school-aged children out of school, our work is far from over. UNICEF works to ensure that every child has access to quality education. This leads to lifelong opportunities and helps advance individual and global development.

If you want to learn more, watch our video to see the positive impact you are making in children’s lives worldwide by fundraising for National UNICEF Day.

5. What happened to the orange Trick-or-Treat boxes?

UNICEF revitalized the Trick-or-Treat campaign to provide a more meaningful, educational and engaging experience for Canadian children. We also wanted to develop a flexible campaign that better reflects the reality of today’s school environment. After surveying schools that participated in 2006, the educational focus for kids was the number one reason they preferred the revamped version over the traditional door-to-door collection campaign.

6. Do you still give out the Halloween bags from a few years ago?

We know that these were very popular with schools; however, we stopped making them in 2010 in a decision that was made to reduce program costs. Unfortunately, it was too costly to continue manufacturing bags for all of our schools

7. Why has UNICEF changed its school program?

Following a thorough review of our National UNICEF Day school program over the past few years, we have moved fundraising resources entirely online. By making these changes, we are able to create a more sustainable school program and ensure more fundraising dollars go to the children who need us most.

At UNICEF, we believe that nowhere is too far to go to help a child survive and thrive. We reach the poorest most vulnerable children in the world’s most inaccessible places, bringing them simple, lifesaving essentials like vaccines, clean water and access to education. We go wherever the need is great. Our determination and reach are unparalleled – because no child is too far.

8. What are some of the changes you have made to the school program?

Changes to the program include:

  • Materials will not be mailed to your school. Visit to print all of the great resources that are available to you and your students.
  • Pickups are not available. Funds collected can be remitted via cheque to UNICEF Canada (90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 400 Toronto, ON M4P 2Y3), dropped off at any CIBC or Desjardins bank, paid with a credit card on the National UNICEF Day donation page, or through the phone at 1 800 567 4483.
  • We are not sending printed pledge envelopes – you can now print pledge forms online, or directly track pledges on your school’s online fundraising page – a fundraising page is already set up for your school online, you just need to search for your school’s name. Once you sign up, we will send you detailed instructions on how to submit your forms and funds.

As always, we are here to help you throughout this transition process and support you in your fundraising efforts. If you have any questions, contact us by email at or call 1 800 567 4483.

9. When did these changes come into effect?

Changes to the school program began in September 2013. All schools are encouraged to visit our website for more information on how to organize a successful school fundraiser.

10. Why are you moving everything online?

We have made a few changes to the National UNICEF Day program to create a more sustainable school fundraising program and ensure more fundraising dollars reach children who need our help the most.

11. What will I find online?

Our website has everything you need to launch a successful school fundraiser:

  • Pledge forms that you can print and send home with your students
  • Online web page for your school to track your progress
  • Fundraising ideas to get students excited and involved
  • Video to kick off your event
  • Lesson plans to help you teach your students about global citizenship
  • Poster to promote your fundraiser

You can now choose from a variety of free educational resources online that are relevant to you and your students. It’s easy to download, print and use!

12. How can we fundraise without using the materials online?

There are ample opportunities to fundraise in your school year round without using the online materials. You can organize a school event such as a pizza day, school dance or bake sale. As always, we’re here to help you brainstorm ideas and help you plan a successful National UNICEF Day fundraiser!

13. How do I register my school to participate?

To register your school, fill out the new online signup form. Visit and click “Sign up today!"

14. What can my child do to fundraise at home?

There are different ways your child can fundraise at home, a few ideas are: offering to do household chores in exchange for donations to UNICEF, or giving something up for a week like their allowance and donating to UNICEF.