We are pleased to announce that SARAYA, in collaboration with UNICEF who is playing a leading role on behalf of the COVAX Facility, will donate 100,000 US dollars of SARAYA’s “Wash a Million Hands!” Project as emergency support against the new coronavirus in Uganda. This SARAYA donation will be made through the Japan Committee for UNICEF.
The “Wash a Million Hands!” Project aims to support the Republic of Uganda in East Africa, one of the countries in the world where handwashing, which is the origin of SARAYA, is still not sufficiently available. SARAYA donates 1% of selected product sales in Japan (manufacturer’s shipment value) of its hygiene products to the Japan Committee for UNICEF to be used in its handwashing promotion program in Uganda. However, while vaccination against the new coronavirus is currently underway in many parts of the world, especially in low-middle income countries, various issues are arising in the process of vaccination, such as procurement and transportation of vaccines. For example, vaccines need to be transported and stored at low temperatures, but it is not easy to operate refrigeration and freezing facilities in areas where a stable electricity supply is out of reach.
In particular, delays in vaccination of medical personnel can interfere with the treatment of life-threatening diseases, prenatal and postnatal care, and health services for newborns. The “Wash a Million Hands!” Project aims to prevent preventable diseases and save the lives of Ugandan children by educating people to wash their hands properly with soap. That said, the loss of life from other treatable diseases due to the effects of the new coronavirus infection is a situation that cannot be overlooked and requires immediate action.
Therefore, Saraya has decided to allocate US$100,000 from the “Wash a Million Hands!” Project to fund UNICEF's activities under the COVAX Facility as emergency assistance, and to support the UNICEF Uganda office's efforts in establishing a cold chain and vaccination system, providing also personal protective equipment and hand hygiene products. The funds will be used to improve the cold chain and vaccination system, purchase personal protective equipment and hand hygiene products, and disseminate correct information on vaccination.
The COVAX Facility is an international framework jointly led by the GAVI Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovation (CEPI), and the World Health Organization (WHO) to jointly secure and equitably distribute vaccines for new coronavirus infections among multiple countries. Within this framework, UNICEF (the United Nations Children's Fund) is playing a leading role in efforts to procure and supply vaccines.
By the end of 2021, UNICEF aims to deliver 2 billion doses of vaccines against the new coronavirus infection to people in all countries participating in the COVAX Facility (currently 190 countries) in an equitable manner. To achieve this goal, UNICEF not only procures vaccines but also assists in securing and stockpiling related materials such as syringes and personal protective equipment (PPE), which are essential for vaccination, as well as developing the "cold chain" necessary to deliver vaccines quickly to rural areas as well as urban areas.