NEW YORK, March 1, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 10th annual UNICEF Tap Project launched today, celebrating a decade of engaging the American public to provide clean, safe water for children around the world. This March for World Water Month, the UNICEF Tap Project is encouraging smartphone users to visit uniceftapproject.org, and take a break from texting, calling, emailing, and social media posting, to help UNICEF save children's lives. By resisting the urge to use their phones for just five minutes, participants unlock a donation equivalent to one day of clean water for a child in need.
Approximately 663 million people do not have clean drinking water, and 2.4 billion live without adequate sanitation facilities. Globally, illnesses caused by unsafe drinking water, lack of sanitation and poor hygiene are among the leading causes of death for children under five, contributing to nearly 1,000 deaths a day.
"Over the last ten years of the UNICEF Tap Project, the American public has raised nearly $6 million to support UNICEF's water, sanitation and hygiene programs in 12 countries. By unplugging during World Water Month, Americans will unlock a donation from Giorgio Armani Fragrances and S'well®, and help provide even more children with the clean water they need to survive and be healthy," said Caryl M. Stern, President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. "Every dollar donated or minute spent away from your phone counts. Just $15 can provide a child with clean, safe water for one year."
"Before, we used to take water from a well," said Fatouma, a mother of five from Burkina Faso. UNICEF has since provided Fatouma's village with a clean water pump. "The water tastes so much better now. You just can't compare it. Because of the water from the old well, my children would get sick too often. Now they are so much healthier. This is a very special gift."
For every five minutes a person spends away from his or her smartphone, Giorgio Armani Fragrances or S'well will provide the funding equivalent of one day of clean water for a child, up to $75,000 and $100,000, respectively. Individuals can donate or sign up as volunteers to support UNICEF's water and sanitation programs for children through the site. Participants can also share how much time they have spent away from their phones and challenge friends and family via social media channels.
For the seventh year, Giorgio Armani Fragrances returns as national partner of the UNICEF Tap Project through its "Acqua for Life" campaign, which is dedicated to bringing safe drinking water to populations in need around the world. The company will donate $15 for each Acqua for Life Acqua di Giò limited edition cologne, and $5 for each Acqua di Giò fragrance spray and Acqua di Gioia fragrance gift set purchased in the U.S. during March, to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF with a minimum guaranteed donation of $500,000. Additionally, the company will also donate $1 for each Acqua for Life bracelet purchased from February 1- June 30. Since 2010, Giorgio Armani Fragrances has donated nearly $2.9 million to support UNICEF's water and sanitation programs around the world.
S'well, a company that creates insulated bottles, is joining for the second year as Proud Supporter of the UNICEF Tap Project with a $100,000 donation. In addition, on World Water Day, March 22 2016, S'well will donate 20% of the retail price of all items purchased from www.swellbottle.com to help UNICEF bring access to safe water to the world's most vulnerable children.
Over the past ten years, celebrated figures such as UNICEF Ambassadors Selena Gomez, Angie Harmon, Joel Madden and UNICEF Supporters such as Nas, Heidi Klum, Jesse Metcalfe and Rihanna have rallied the American public to support the organization's water and sanitation programs, benefiting children around the world.
Last year alone, UNICEF provided 22.6 million people in emergencies with access to safe water for drinking, bathing and cooking. UNICEF and partners have helped 2.6 billion people gain access to clean drinking water over the last 25 years. UNICEF works in more than 100 countries around the world to improve access to safe water and sanitation facilities in schools and communities and to promote safe hygiene practices.
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to put children first. UNICEF has helped save more children's lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, clean water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more. The U.S. Fund for UNICEF supports UNICEF's work through fundraising, advocacy and education in the United States. Together, we are working toward the day when no children die from preventable causes and every child has a safe and healthy childhood. For more information, visit www.unicefusa.org.
SOURCE U.S. Fund for UNICEF