News

Immediate funding needs for MNT elimination

Oct 19, 2016
Mother and child in Ethiopia.
It is a pivotal time in our fight to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus—a disease that is on the brink of elimination. Globally, 40 out of 59 priority countries have been validated for MNT elimination, as well as all of Ethiopia except for the Somali Region and 16 out of 17 provinces in the Philippines.

Now it’s time for the final push; moms and babies are counting on Kiwanis. That is especially true in Yemen and Sudan. UNICEF urgently needs funding and support in the next three months to carry out upcoming supplemental immunization activities in these countries.

Following the escalation of conflict in March 2015, health workers have had trouble reaching conflict-heavy regions in Yemen. The country is restarting its MNT elimination campaign later this year in the face of this major humanitarian crisis. It is crucial that UNICEF take advantage of this window of opportunity. In 2015, the neonatal mortality rate was 22 per 1,000 live babies. In order to reach more than 530,000 women with a round of immunizations in the first quarter of 2017, UNICEF urgently needs approximately US$780,000.

In Sudan, UNICEF plans to reach 2.8 million women in 76 high-risk districts in May 2017. There is an estimated funding gap of $1.8 million for necessary vaccines, devices and operational support. The funding gap for the round of immunizations scheduled for October 2016 has been met; the subsequent round in the spring will ensure that all women are sufficiently immunized against tetanus.

Kiwanis has the power to spare these women of the ultimate grief, so they can cherish the smiles and laughter of their daughters and sons instead. It’s the bond that every mother and child deserves—and the connection we promised to protect.

Help Kiwanis keep its promise to these families. Make your gift . . . and finish the fight.