Alwaleed Philanthropies and UNICEF Join Hands to Help Save Millions of Children from Measles and Rubella

Monday, 24 April, 2017

Alwaleed Philanthropies Global (Registration no. 333- Lebanon), chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlSaud and UNICEF announce today a US$50 million partnership to help achieve a world where no child dies from measles or is born with severe disabilities caused by rubella. 


The investment from Alwaleed Philanthropies provides vital funding to help UNICEF and its partners in the Measles & Rubella Initiative to protect millions of children from these diseases through safe and effective vaccines. Alwaleed Philanthropies’ generous contribution will help vaccinate more than 51 million vulnerable children in 14 countries.   


“The number of children around the world still suffering from measles and rubella is astonishing --but what is more astonishing is how easy it is to prevent these diseases through safe and effective vaccines,” said HRH Princess Lamia, Secretary General and member of the Board of Trustees at Alwaleed Philanthropies. “Today, Alwaleed Philanthropies and UNICEF have joined forces to help eliminate measles and rubella. This is the kind of philanthropic partnership we need to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals -- and to protect some of the most vulnerable children in the world.” 


Measles remains one of the leading causes of death among children, with more than 300 children dying from the disease every day in 2015. In addition, over 100,000 babies are born with congenital rubella syndrome every year, a disease that can leave children blind, deaf or with other serious health defects if their mothers are infected with rubella during pregnancy.


“We have come so far in the global fight to eliminate measles and rubella – how can we rest until we protect every child?” said UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake.  “Alwaleed Philanthropies’ generosity will provide critical funding and serve as a catalyst to spur greater investment and greater practical action to immunize the children at the greatest risk.” 


Both measles and rubella are easily preventable through immunization. Since 2001, UNICEF and its partners have helped reach more than 2 billion children around the world with immunization against measles and rubella.  
 

For over 37 years, Alwaleed Philanthropies has supported and initiated projects in over 124 countries regardless of gender, race or religion. It collaborates with a range of philanthropic,  governmental and educational organizations to combat poverty, empower women and youth, develop communities, provide disaster relief and create cultural understanding through education. Together with its partners, it helps build bridges for a more compassionate, tolerant and accepting world.