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By Rashini Suriyaarachchi
27 May 2020

$30 can go a long way in providing urgently needed supplies - like learning materials, vaccines and emergency food - to children who need it most.

It's easy to forget how dramatically different the costs of goods and services can be around the globe. The money we might spend on a week's worth of coffee in Melbourne or a nice meal in Sydney can go a long way in other parts of the world. Here are just a few things you can purchase across the globe with thirty dollars.

115 polio vaccines for children

Years of conflict and turmoil have made Syria one of the worst places in the world to be a child. With hospitals destroyed and shut down, doctors forced to flee and health and sanitation services incredibly hard to come by, disease can spread at a devastating pace.

So when the polio virus returned to Syria in 2013 there was a critical need to vaccinate children and stop an outbreak. UNICEF supports massive vaccination campaigns to reach children across the country - even in besieged and hard-to-reach areas.

In March, UNICEF and partners supported a five-day immunisation campaign in the governorate of Homs, Syria, aiming to protect over 199,000 children under the age of five against polio. 

Since 2000, more than 2.5 billion children have been vaccinated worldwide, and the number of children paralysed by polio has fallen by more than 99 per cent. Together, we can eradicate polio once and for all. 

With $30, UNICEF could purchase 115 polio vaccinations to protect children and help keep this deadly disease out of Syria for good. 

Woman dropping polio vaccine into the mouth of a child
In March, UNICEF and partners supported a five-day immunisation campaign in the governorate of Homs, Syria, aiming to protect over 199,000 children under the age of five - including children returning from Rukban camp for internally displaced families - against polio.
© UNICEF/UNI272844/Al-Issa

23,530 litres of clean water after an earthquake

In 2018, a series of massive earthquakes tore through Papua New Guinea. Homes, hospitals and schools were severely damaged and many supplies of safe drinking water were cut off.

Thousands of children - many in remote communities - were left in urgent need of food, water and shelter. Children were forced to drink dirty rain water for days and were at risk of catching deadly waterborne diseases due to the limited access to vaccines and treatment. 

Then the water purification tablets arrived. With each tablet, five litres of dirty water became a clean, safe source of life.

$30 can buy 4,706 water purification tablets - enough to clean 23,540 litres of water after a natural disaster like the earthquake in Papua New Guinea.

Picture on left is baby with an open bottle of water. Picture on left is a blue tray of water with a hand hovering over the top holding a small white pill.
One-year-old Solina contracted diarrhorea from being forced to drink unsafe water after an earthquake struck her village in Papua ew Guinea. Clean drinking water is necessary in the aftermath of disaster and can be easily provided by using water purification tablets (right).
© UNICEF/UN0187560/Bell; © UNICEF/UN012111/Sokhin

736 pencils for displaced children

When conflict and violence forces you to leave your home, school can be a sanctuary that makes the world feel safe and normal again. In the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh, almost 500,000 children are at risk of missing out on critical years of education.

$30 can buy 736 pencils to help Rohingya children in crisis in Bangladesh get back to learning and playing as soon as possible.

A classroom of children with two girls in center of frame smiling.
Mostakima, 11 and her best friend Shamima, 11, sit close to each other during a class in a UNICEF-supported learning centre.
© UNICEF/UN0346588/Modola

Attending classes in UNICEF-supported safe spaces provides the stability, structure and routine these children need to cope with the fear and stress of displacement. Staying in school means that children are protected from violence, enables continued development and learning, and helps to prevent child labour.

Children sitting on floor mats writing in notebooks. The closest child is smiling at the camera.
Children attend a class at a UNICEF-supported learning centre in the Rohingya refugee camps. In late 2017, around 500,000 Rohingya children were forced to leave their homes and flee to Bangladesh. UNICEF is now providing them with safe spaces to learn and grow.
© UNICEF/UN0158183/Sujan

55 sachets of life-saving peanut paste to treat malnourished children

When Amira refused to eat her mother, Einas, knew something was wrong. Amira was getting thinner by the day and weighed just 4.9kg. She was severely acute malnourished.

"She would be sitting tired, without eating or drinking and we were all worried," Einas said.

The little girl was immediately admitted to the UNICE-supported outpatient therapeutic program in Aweil, South Sudan. Einas was given a week’s ration of ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF), also known as Plumpy' Nut ®, which she slowly hand-fed Amira three times a day.

Every week, Einas returned to the clinic for a progress check-up of Amira before new RUTF rations was provided. Eight weeks of peanut paste (RUTF) did the trick. Amira now weighs 6.5 kg and has been discharged from the nutrition program.

$30 could buy 55 sachets of Plumpy’Nut® , a nutritious peanut paste fortified with vitamins and minerals to help children recover from severe malnutrition. Three sachets a day can save a child’s life and bring them back to health in weeks.

Young child on mum's lap,
When Amira was brought into a nutrition centre in South Sudan, she was severely malnourished.

A profound impact for children every month

UNICEF Australia’s Global Parents help deliver these things to children every month. They choose to give what they can because they know how even a little contribution can make a lifechanging difference to families in crisis, because they want to make giving a part of who they are and how they live, and because they’re proud to be part of a kind and generous community.

For $30 a month, you can too. As a Global Parent you’ll deliver education, water, vaccines and therapeutic food to the world’s most vulnerable children.

When emergency strikes, you’ll help our teams deliver prepositioned supplies to families who have lost everything. When conflicts fade from the headlines, you’ll help us stand by children in danger. And when drought, disease and famine go unreported, your generosity can help the world’s forgotten children.

You can help continue this vital work, wherever children need us most. By signing up with a monthly gift, you make powerful commitment: that wherever a child is born and whatever comes their way, they’ll have a life, a chance, a choice.

Father and child wrapped in a blanket looking at the camera
© UNICEF/UN0761219

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