|© Procter & Gamble/2009/Baumgartner|
|UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Angélique Kidjo holds a young child during a mission to Haiti in 2009.|
NEW YORK, USA, 15 January 2010 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Angélique Kidjo has added her voice to the global call for donations to bring urgently needed assistance to the children of Haiti and their families. The singer and activist took time out from her European concert tour to record a fundraising appeal in Paris.
Ms. Kidjo visited Haiti in September 2009 and saw for herself the desperate circumstances of children’s and women’s lives, even in relatively normal times. “I could hardly imagine the situation could become worse. And now…an earthquake,” she said this week.
In her video message, Ms. Kidjo appeals to donors to help UNICEF help Haiti’s children: “ As a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, I need you to join me. Your donation to UNICEF will make a lifesaving difference to untold thousands.”
Funding urgently needed
UNICEF has been active in Haiti for years, but it’s clear that the need for urgent assistance has never been greater. Children are the most vulnerable in any emergency; almost half of Haiti’s population of about 10 million is under 18.
Already, UNICEF has released several million dollars toward the relief efforts from several emergency sources, but more funding is urgently needed for basic medical and health supplies, temporary shelter, safe water, and hygiene and sanitation supplies.
Another UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Mia Farrow, has also been active in raising awareness, having contributed a call to action on CNN.com’s earthquake response pages yesterday.
“In any disaster, children are the most vulnerable,” Ms. Farrow wrote. “They are in danger of being separated from their families, and they are at increased risk of injury, disease, malnutrition and every form of exploitation and abuse. Undoubtedly, with a disaster of this magnitude, these threats will be particularly grave for Haiti's children.”
Earthquake in Haiti