Central African Republic

Mia Farrow travels to CAR to support the fight against polio

UNICEF Image
© UNICEF video
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow, herself a polio victim, launched the UNICEF-supported vaccination campaign along with CAR’s First Lady, Monique Bozize.

BANGUI, Central African Republic , 17 May 2008 – Actress and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow has travelled to the Central African Republic (CAR) for a week-long visit to highlight the plight of thousands of women and children who desperately need the world’s attention.

On her first day in the country, Ms. Farrow, together with the First Lady of CAR, Monique Bozize, launched a nationwide, three-day polio vaccination campaign supported by UNICEF. During the drive, 750,000 children will receive the oral polio vaccine.

UNICEF Image
© UNICEF CAR/2008/Holtz
Mothers with young children line up at a health post in Begoua district, in the Central African Republic’s capital, Bangui, waiting for the two drops of the oral polio vaccine that will prevent paralysis and death.

“Today is very meaningful to me,” said Ms. Farrow. “I had polio myself as a child but was fortunate to survive without any real damage. I’m happy to join UNICEF in this effort to eradicate this paralyzing disease.”

In the middle of volatility

It is Ms. Farrow’s second visit to CAR since 2007. By coming here as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, she hopes to bring attention to women’s and children’s needs in a country where nearly 300,000 people have fled their homes due to years of fighting between armed groups.

CAR is one of the world’s poorest and most overlooked countries, located in the heart of a volatile region affected by ongoing instability. UNICEF is working to assist the vulnerable population of CAR with basic needs and access to rights.

UNICEF Image
© UNICEF CAR/2008/Holtz
Actress and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow in CAR for the launch of a national polio immunization campaign.

In the coming week, Ms. Farrow will travel throughout northern CAR, visiting UNICEF-supported health clinics, water and sanitation projects, schools and sites for displaced people as well a camp for refugees from the Darfur region of Sudan.

“CAR has noisy neighbours,” Ms. Farrow said, referring to the conflicts in neighbouring Chad, Uganda and Sudan, which add to CAR’s own crippling problems. “We need to support the children through this very difficult time.”


 

 

Video

16 May 2008:
UNICEF correspondent Guy Deegan reports on Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow’s advocacy efforts for polio immunization in the Central African Republic.
 VIDEO  high | low

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