Wednesday, 11 April 2012

News Release: UNICEF Says “Scandal In West Africa Will No Longer Be Ignored”

UNICEF UK is launching a major new campaign this week to draw attention to the worsening situation for children in West Africa

David Bull, UNICEF UK's Executive Director, has published an emotional letter in several national newspapers, including the Times, TelegraphIndependent, and Guardian. 

“It's a scandal," he writes. "We have seen some of the most amazing technological advances in recent decades, and yet we haven’t stopped young children starving,

UNICEF estimates that right now at least a million children are at risk of severe malnutrition, and could die within months. 

"We think this is a scandal and we should bring it to your attention," Bull said. "If you too think this is an outrage, please help us do something about it."

In the last week, our appeal for West Africa has reached more than 40.4 million people worldwide via the Twitter hashtag #sahelNOW, including tweets from Selena Gomez and Eddie Izzard.

Hashjacking Twitter:
This week's newspaper letter will be accompanied by a "hashjacking" on Twitter where UNICEF UK and our supporters will try to take over trending hashtags with the latest information about the West Africa crisis.

UNICEF is the largest provider of therapeutic food for severely malnourished children in the region and has already treated tens of thousands of children since January. 

However, so far the crisis remains dangerously underreported in the media, and UNICEF has received less than half of the £77 million it needs to help prevent the deaths of over one million children in the area.