Article by Cotton On Group on BizCommunity
The largest vaccine operation in history is underway, and Cotton On is rallying to help. The Cotton On Group is proud to be the first global retailer to partner with Unicef in helping to deliver one million Covid-19 vaccines to the world’s most vulnerable.
The global fundraising campaign kicks off in South African stores and online today until 4 July, with 100% of proceeds from the sale of Cotton On Foundation products going to support the delivery of Covid-19 vaccinations as part of the global CoVax response, and diagnostic tests and treatments. The initial vaccines secured through these funds will protect the most at risk across Africa, including frontline health care workers and teachers, so they can continue to provide services and care for their community.
“This pandemic has impacted everyone, and vaccines need to be accessible to each and every person to help bring it to an end,” said South African actress and Cotton On Foundation ambassador Nomzamo Mbatha. “It is particularly heart-breaking to see how communities across Africa are being left behind in the vaccine race and it’s imperative that we protect those most in need, so that children can continue schooling and community life can continue,” noted Mbatha. “As a longstanding friend of the Cotton On Foundation, who have a long history of commitment to true social upliftment, I am proud to support them in their partnership with Unicef to help deliver one million vaccines to the world’s most vulnerable people,” she added.
The CoVax Facility – supported by Unicef, WHO and GAVI – is the global Covid vaccine equity scheme and works to bridge the gaps to vaccine inequities by guaranteeing fair and equitable access for every country in the world.
Unicef South Africa is supporting the Department of Health-led Covid-19 vaccination rollout in the country through health worker training, cold chain management and data analysis as well as promoting the importance of ongoing non-pharmaceutical prevention measures.
“Children across South Africa have suffered greatly, as Covid-19 has impacted every step of their childhood, from disrupting education to child health services and exposure to violence and mental health issues, often behind closed doors,” said Christine Muhigana, Unicef South Africa Representative.
“Vaccines provide the hope that children, young people and all of us need to reimagine a safer, fairer and better future for every child,” added Muhigana.
In addition to helping deliver one million Covid-19 vaccines, Cotton On is continuing its own efforts to provide essential health services in Africa and SouthEast Asia, communities where the Cotton On Foundation has an extensive history. Since 2007, in partnership with its team members and customers, the Cotton On Group has raised over R1,3bn through the Cotton On Foundation, to deliver quality education around the globe.
“There has never been a more important time to rally together to help respond to the biggest crisis the world is facing right now because Covid-19 isn’t over for anyone, until it’s over for everyone,” said Tony Stuart, chief executive officer of Unicef Australia. Go to cottonon.com to find out how to purchase select COF products or donate across Cotton On, Cotton On Body, Rubi, Cotton On Kids, Factorie or Typo stores to make a difference today.
Click here to support.
A few key statistics
- An additional 140 million children in developing countries are projected to be in households living below the poverty line. (Unicef data hub: Covid-19 and children)
- 188 countries imposed countrywide school closures during the pandemic, affecting more than 1.6 billion children and youth. At least one in three of the world’s schoolchildren – 463 million children globally – were unable to access remote learning during Covid-19 school closures. (Unicef data hub: Covid-19 and children)
- As of mid-November 2020, children made up 8% of Covid-19 confirmed cases in South Africa. (Unicef report: How COVID-19 is changing childhood in South Africa (November 2020))
- The economic impacts of the pandemic have had a direct impact on the children of South Africa, with an estimated 2.2 million jobs lost in the country between April and June 2020. The loss of income made it more difficult than ever for families to provide for their children – in April 2020 (the first month of the lockdown in South Africa) At least 47% of households ran out of money for food. (Unicef report: How Covid-19 is changing childhood in South Africa (November 2020))
- Due to Covid-19 measures, approximately 80 million children under the age of one in at least 68 countries may miss out on receiving life-saving vaccines for preventable diseases including measles. (Unicef data hub: Covid-19 and children)
- Covid-19 is increasing global poverty and the nutritional status of the poorest people will deteriorate further. Stunting, which is an impact of poor nutrition, is 2.4 times higher in the world’s poorest children, compared to those in the richest nations, and is likely to increase as a result. (Unicef data hub: Covid-19 and children)