“I just don’t want to!” How many times have you heard that from your child in the last two years? It can be wearing a mask, going to school or a simple visit to the grocery store. It occurred to me recently that the only time my son has been in a grocery store the past two years was to get vaccinated. It’s not even done consciously anymore. We’ve moved on from purposeful actions to simply the way of life. I think about the things that have become commonplace to children: masks, lockdown drills, worries about climate change and their generation across borders. It has all become a way of life for them. That is not only where we are making the mistake, but also where we can make the change. The time has come for parents to choose change over the status quo.
Each generation has burdens to bear but also a legacy of hope to pass on. A responsibility that has stood the test of time repeatedly because young people and the adults around them have united for change. UNICEF has successfully been at the forefront of that change for 75 years, providing support for the world’s children facing illness, malnutrition, conflict, climate change and migration. Today’s world has compounded all of these into a crisis for children.
The time has come for parents to choose change over the status quo.
This year, we need to leave the status quo behind by supporting UNICEF USA’s mission to build a more equitable world for children. In addition to raising critical funds for UNICEF’s life-saving work, there are many other ways to get involved through grassroots initiatives in our community. I’ve witnessed the power of our volunteer programs in the many ways I’ve served as a UNICEF UNITE Council Lead – from hosting virtual webinars to raise awareness about child marriage in the U.S. to leading Congressional meetings and advocating for child protection policies. Our New England supporters will continue to rally behind UNICEF USA’s top legislative priorities to improve the lives of children by leading meetings with Congress during this year’s annual Advocacy Day on Thursday, March 24th. You can join our team of advocates by Registering today!
Our elected officials must hear from parents about our priorities for our children. When you support the world’s largest procurement and delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, you are supporting a massive effort to stop COVID and its variants. This is where you stand up for opening schools and saving lives. When you support a mental health bill for our schools, you support our children who need help coping with the pandemic and the changes it brought. You support your child’s teacher in the ability to identify and help the student that may be suffering. When you support the continued appropriations for the world’s largest and most effective organization for children, you are supporting a water station for a child who has none, a nutritional program to save the life of a malnourished child, a warm blanket for a refugee child in winter’s harshest cold, a school and supplies for children to learn.
Our elected officials must hear from parents about our priorities for our children.
In the end, all of these will lead to a future where all children can grow stronger and smarter. This is where we see our future, where our children’s bright smiles will shine again for all to see. All in one day.
Please join us on Advocacy Day, Thursday, March 24. Register for Advocacy Day today.
Top photo: Health care workers carry UNICEF-provided vaccines through difficult terrain in Barpak Village, Nepal. © UNICEF/UNI199196/Panday