U.S. Commits $1 Billion over Four Years to Help Save up to Six Million Children's Lives
Investment in Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, a key step toward ending preventable child deaths
Berlin, Germany, January 27, 2015 — Today the U.S. government pledged $1 billion over four years to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, to help the world’s poorest countries deliver lifesaving vaccines to protect their children. With this and other commitments made at a funding summit today in Berlin, Gavi exceeded its goal of $7.5 billion and is on track to finance its strategy to vaccinate 300 million more children by 2020, saving up to six million lives.
“I am thrilled to see such a strong U.S. commitment to Gavi and to the health of millions of the world’s hardest to reach children,” said Joanne Carter, Executive Director of RESULTS and RESULTS Educational Fund. “With this pledge, President Barack Obama and USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah are taking an essential step toward the goal of a world free from extreme poverty in the next 15 years.”
The U.S. pledge marks the country’s largest for Gavi to-date, answering the calls of advocates, media, members of Congress, and community leaders nationwide.
All told, international donors committed $7.539 billion to Gavi today, including landmark contributions from the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Through Gavi, those resources will leverage the investments of low- and middle-income countries themselves to enable vaccine delivery.
Since its founding in 2000, Gavi has helped poor countries vaccinate over half a billion children, saving seven million lives. Gavi is now ready to launch its most ambitious plan yet, hastening its work to save lives through co-financing routine immunization, investing in stronger health systems, and bringing down the price of vaccines with innovative market shaping. Combining today’s donor pledges with existing funds, Gavi has the resources to fully fund its plan, further accelerating efforts to reach the most vulnerable children.
“By supporting countries to deliver vaccines that help protect against some of the world’s leading childhood killers, including pneumonia and severe diarrhea, U.S. investment in Gavi is essential to both building stronger health systems and fulfilling the Administration’s bold goal of ending preventable child deaths,” said Carter.
Last year, the U.S. government took a number of critical steps to accelerate progress toward this goal, realigning funding to save even more lives and committing to a set of strategic recommendations from a high-level external review panel, including creation of an empowered USAID Child and Maternal Survival Coordinator.
Continuing ambitious implementation of these key recommendations will even better position the U.S. to work alongside Gavi and the global community toward a healthier future. Congress has an opportunity to further strengthen U.S. efforts by enshrining these reforms into law and supporting strong investment.
“We’re no longer aiming to just reduce preventable child deaths: we’re now on the path to ending them,” said Carter. “This effort received a huge boost today, but our success is far from guaranteed. It will require continued robust financial investment, an even more aggressive focus on equity to reach the hardest-to-reach children, and continued ambition from all of us.”
About RESULTS and RESULTS Educational Fund:
RESULTS and RESULTS Educational Fund are sister organizations that, together, are a leading force in ending poverty in the United States and around the world. We create long-term solutions to poverty by supporting programs that address its root causes — lack of access to health, education, or opportunity to move up the economic ladder. We do this by empowering ordinary people to become extraordinary voices for the end of poverty in their communities, the media, and the halls of government. The collective voices of these passionate grassroots activists, coordinated with grass-tops efforts driven by our staff, leverage millions of dollars for programs and improved policies that give low-income people the tools they need to move out of poverty.
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