I am pleased to announce that I am a blogger who supports Shot@Life, a life-saving United Nations organization that supports children around the world with life-saving vaccinations.
No statistic can express what it is to see even one child die in such a way; to see a mother sitting hour after anxious hour leaning her child’s body against her own; to see the child’s head turn on limbs which are unnaturally still, stiller than in sleep; to want to stop even that small movement because it is so obvious that there is so little energy left inside the child’s life; to see the living pink at the roof of the child’s mouth in shocking contrast to the already dead-looking grayness of the skin, the colors of its life and death; to see the uncomprehending panic in eyes which are still the clear and lucid eyes of a child; and then to know, in one endless moment, that life has gone.
Thirty years ago, when UNICEF launched its “Child Survival Revolution,” 14 million children under the age of five died every year around the world. Today, after three decades of leadership, innovation, and hard work, that grim number has been cut in half. This progress must strengthen our resolve to do more, faster, because today we have more and better tools, and saving the other half is now possible.
Next week world leaders will convene in Washington, D.C. to create a road map toward ending preventable childhood deaths. The gathering is being co-convened by the United States, Ethiopia, and India, in close partnership with UNICEF. The expected outcome of the meeting is a consensus among health experts and political leaders that ending childhood deaths is achievable in our lifetimes, and a detailed action plan to get us there.
By pledging to work together to end preventable child deaths, the partners of A Promise Renewed are uniting in a common cause that every generation in history has instinctively embraced: doing our best so that children may survive and thrive.
I will be reporting on this event as I will be joining the event’s live stream. Stay tuned for more information right here.
Meanwhile, if you are interested in helping Shot@Life, find out ways here.