According to the U.N. Foundation, 1.7 million children will die in 2018 from diseases that have been nearly or entirely eradicated in the United States, such as measles, pneumonia, polio, and diarrhea. One in five children globally have no access to immunizations.
“Expanding access to vaccines strengthens our ability to fight disease globally and keep our families healthy here at home, while improving economic stability around the world,” a blog published on the U.N. Foundation’s website reads.
That’s what inspired the U.N. Foundation to create the Shot@Life campaign, an initiative to educate Americans about global vaccination programs. It’s a national call-to-action to support expanding access to the most basic medical needs.
With the help of corporate partners and donors, the U.N. provides tangible results: vaccines for polio, measles, and other disease given to underserved populations. At home, they train volunteers to advocate from an educated stance for global immunizations. They also run media placements, including radio and television spots.
We live in the country where, in 1736, Benjamin Franklin wrote a letter mourning his failure to inoculate his youngest son. The boy died of smallpox, and Franklin was very certain he knew the cause. Today, nearly 300 years later, a growing contingent of anti-science sentiment has set up vaccination as their bogeyman, and these same diseases that ravage the young of impoverished countries are resurging in the United States. They can only be eradicated through global vaccination.
Shot@Life cites that for every dollar invested, the program gets a $3 return in funds raised to support global vaccines. In their first five years, they have raised nearly $6.5 million in donor and private funds—an amount that could provide nearly 30 million doses of vaccines.
Anyone wishing to donate or contribute can do so here, or by mailing a check to the address under the link. Donations are fully tax-deductible. Shot@Life has a 91% rating on Charity Navigator, with a 96% rating for transparency.