U.S. Fund for UNICEF Raising Money To Provide Emergency Relief for Children Affected By Disasters in Japan

Mar 14, 2011, 16:56 ET from U.S. Fund for UNICEF

NEW YORK, March 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Fund for UNICEF is raising funds to help children in Japan impacted by the recent earthquake and tsunami.  This is an unusual decision, as Japan is a donor to UNICEF, not a recipient of its assistance.  However, due to the unprecedented nature of the epic disaster and its impact on children, resources are going to be critical in helping provide for the very unique needs of children.  These may include health, development and protection and other needs that may have been compromised or disrupted in the wake of catastrophe.

USF has been quietly assessing the situation in Japan, holding off on appealing for donations until a plan was put into place to provide on-the-ground support to children in the worst-affected areas.  Tomorrow, senior members of the UNICEF team based in Japan will go on an assessment to some of the worst-hit areas of Japan, and this will help inform decision making about where funds are most needed.

"The people of Japan have been unfailingly generous to UNICEF ….today is their time of need and it is a privilege to be able to show them the same generosity and empathy they have consistently provided to others in need," said Caryl Stern, President & CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.  "No one is better at helping children in times of crisis than UNICEF.  Sadly, we have more than 65 years of experience doing just that."

Headquartered in Tokyo, with several regional offices, the Japan Committee for UNICEF was established in 1955 to educate, advocate and raise funds in support of UNICEF.  Japan Committee for UNICEF has a well-established network of relationships with private citizens, local NGOs, volunteers, schools and the business community.  It is this very network that will be used to help identify children in need of support, and the best programs and approaches by which to make this possible.

The government of Japan is also a close ally in UNICEF's work to save and improve children's lives, consistently among the organization's top donors to regular programs and emergency programs.  In fact, UNICEF operates a separate office in Tokyo for fundraising and advocacy with the Japanese government.  UNICEF's 60-year collaboration with Japan is one of the most significant in its history. UNICEF first provided powdered milk to Japanese children in 1949; Japan made its first contribution to the organization a year later.

UNICEF is the world's leading organization for children and has extensive experience in addressing the unique needs of children who have survived trauma related to natural and man-made crises.

How to help: For more information or to make a tax-deductible contribution please contact the U.S. Fund for UNICEF:

Website: http://www.unicefusa.org

Toll free: 1-800-FOR-KIDS (1-800-367-5437)

Mail: 125 Maiden Lane, New York, NY 10016

As with any emergency, in the event that donations exceed anticipated needs, USF will redirect any excess funds to children in greatest need.


UNICEF has saved more children's lives than any other humanitarian organization in the world. Working in more than 150 countries, UNICEF provides children with health care, clean water, 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.

UNICEF is at the forefront of efforts to reduce child mortality worldwide. There has been substantial progress: the annual number of under-five deaths dropped from 13 million in 1990 to 8.8 million in 2008. But still, 22,000 children die each day from preventable causes. Our mission is to do whatever it takes to make that number zero by giving children the essentials for a safe and healthy childhood. For more information, visit www.unicefusa.org.

For additional information, please contact:

Kini Schoop, U.S. Fund for UNICEF, 212.922.2634, (m) 917.415.6508, kschoop@unicefusa.org

Susannah Masur, U.S. Fund for UNICEF, 212.880.9146, (m) 646.428.5010, smasur@unicefusa.org