#GiveAVax campaign provides unique opportunity to support the vaccination of millions of people in low-income countries
TORONTO, 23 July 2021 – With almost 80 per cent of Toronto adults having received at least their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, 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 less than 1 per cent of vaccines have been administered.
Today, David Morley, President and CEO of UNICEF Canada, Minister of International Development Karina Gould, Toronto Mayor John Tory, Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eileen de Villa and Councillor Joe Cressy gathered to ask Canadians to #GiveAVax to help end the pandemic for everyone, everywhere.
UNICEF Canada’s #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 around the world. 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.
As new and more infectious variants of the virus emerging, the world is in a race against time to vaccinate as many people as possible. The pandemic will not end for anyone until it ends for everyone, warns UNICEF Canada.
In a recent poll, 85 per cent of Canadians agreed that it is important COVID-19 vaccines are distributed fairly to all countries and two-thirds of Canadians said they want Canada to take a leadership role in ensuring vaccine access for all. #GiveAVax allows Canadians who are vaccinated to pay it forward and donate to UNICEF’s efforts.
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.
Canadians can donate to #GiveAVax by visiting unicef.ca or by texting “VACCINES” to 45678 to donate $10.
“Time is ticking. Working together to vaccinate the world is one of the most effective ways to help children, their families and their communities move beyond the pandemic and protect us all from future variants. We are urgently calling on Canadians to #GiveAVax and help us with the monumental task of delivering vaccines to people around the globe, including in some of the world’s hardest-to-reach places."
- David Morley, President and CEO of UNICEF Canada
“As more and more Canadians are receiving their 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, I encourage them to donate to UNICEF Canada’s fundraising campaign. Their donation to UNICEF will be matched and will help front-line workers and vulnerable communities in the developing world to access life-saving vaccines. It’s time to give back, it’s time to Give a Vax.”
- The Hon. Karina Gould, Minister of International Development
“I’m proud of the excellent progress we have made in getting people across our city vaccinated against COVID-19. The Team Toronto vaccination efforts have allowed Torontonians to get both their first and second shots quickly, but we know that many countries still do not have the same opportunity. I am proud to support #GiveAVax to help other communities get their shots, and help end the pandemic for everyone around the world."
- John Tory, Mayor of Toronto
“We know the best protection against COVID-19 and its variants is getting vaccinated as soon as possible. #GiveAVax helps ensure that we are protecting frontline health workers in low-income countries and our communities from future variants that may emerge if we do not collectively rise to this challenge. We can beat COVID-19, together.”
- Dr. Eileen de Villa, Medical Officer of Health for the City of Toronto
"In a global pandemic, no one is safe until everyone is safe. In our city and country, we've been incredibly privileged to have access to life-saving vaccines to help protect ourselves and our loved ones from COVID-19. Many countries around the world are still struggling to get vaccines to their most vulnerable residents. Through the #GiveAVax campaign, Torontonians can partner with UNICEF and the Government of Canada to help vaccinate people around the world, bringing us one step closer to our goal of global vaccine equity."
- Councillor Joe Cressy, Chair of the Toronto Board of Health
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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.