VANCOUVER, 5 August 2021 – With over 80 per cent of eligible British Columbians having received their first dose and over 60 per cent fully vaccinated, the light at the end of the tunnel looks brighter than ever. However, the situation is very different for families and communities in low-income countries, where about 1 per cent of vaccines have been administered.
Today, David Morley, President and CEO of UNICEF Canada, the Honourable Dr. Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, the Provincial Health Officer for British Columbia, gather at the Vancouver Convention Centre to ask Canadians to #GiveAVax to help end the pandemic for everyone, everywhere.
Canada’s vaccination efforts have hit many key milestones. Last week, the federal government announced that they have secured enough COVID-19 vaccines to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians. However, as the virus circulates globally, the likelihood of mutations increases, resulting in variants of concerns that threaten to prolong the pandemic for all.
More than 8 out of 10 Canadians agree that vaccinating people in developing countries is just as important as vaccinating people in countries like Canada.
The #GiveAVax campaign provides a unique opportunity for Canadians to help UNICEF deliver life-saving vaccines to health workers and high-risk groups in lower-income countries. Over the summer, the Government of Canada will match donations dollar for dollar up to $10 million to UNICEF Canada, meaning that donations will go twice as far to save lives. Canadians have raised $4.5 million so far.
As the global leader in vaccine delivery, UNICEF has been tasked by the COVAX Facility with delivering 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines to countries around the globe before the end of the year. Every donation to the #GiveAVax campaign helps UNICEF get closer to its goal.
Canadians who are vaccinated can pay it forward and donate to UNICEF’s efforts by visiting unicef.ca or by texting “VACCINES” to 45678 to donate $10.
“The pandemic will not end for anyone until it ends for everyone. As new and more infectious variants of the virus emerge, the world is in a race against time to vaccinate as many people as possible. We are urgently calling on Canadians to #GiveAVax and help us with the monumental task of delivering vaccines to frontline health workers around the globe, including in some of the world’s hardest-to-reach places."
- David Morley, President and CEO of UNICEF Canada
“Canada has enough COVID-19 vaccine doses for every eligible Canadian, but to end COVID-19 in Canada we must beat it everywhere. It is after all a pandemic. Canadians can lead the way to help frontline workers and vulnerable communities in the developing world get access to life-saving vaccines. I encourage all to donate to UNICEF Canada’s #GiveAVax campaign, which will be matched dollar for dollar by the federal government.”
- The Honourable Dr. Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre
“I want to thank each and every British Columbian who has stepped up and received their vaccine. This small act not only protects you, but your loved ones and community. As we take this next step forward to putting the COVID-19 pandemic behind us, we must remember the challenging times ahead for those many countries that have not had access to vaccines like we have. I encourage British Columbians to give everyone, everywhere the best protection possible and to #GiveAVax.”
- Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer for British Columbia
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Multimedia can be found here.
About UNICEF’s role in COVAX
UNICEF is leveraging its experience as the largest single vaccine buyer in the world and working with manufacturers and partners on the procurement of COVID-19 vaccine doses, as well as freight, logistics and storage. In collaboration with the PAHO Revolving Fund, UNICEF is leading efforts to procure and supply doses of COVID-19 vaccines for COVAX. In addition, UNICEF, Gavi and WHO are working with governments around the clock to ensure that countries are ready to receive the vaccines, with appropriate cold chain equipment in place and health workers trained to dispense them. UNICEF is also playing a lead role in efforts to foster trust in vaccines, delivering vaccine confidence communications and tracking and addressing misinformation around the world.