• Contact Us
  • Login

U.S. Government contribution for UNICEF

U.S. Government Appropriations

© U.S. Fund for UNICEF/Telford

Since its creation in 1947, UNICEF has saved more children’s lives than any humanitarian organization in the world. No other organization does more to help vulnerable children around the world to survive and thrive.

UNICEF supports maternal, prenatal, and newborn care; child health and nutrition; clean water and sanitation; quality basic education for girls and boys; and protecting children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. Because of its unique experience and global presence, UNICEF is able to participate in all stages of assistance – emergency response, post-crisis recovery, and long-term development.

UNICEF’s partnership with the U.S. Government and the American people makes a profound difference in children’s lives. UNICEF and the United States helped to cut the number of under-five child deaths from 12 million a year in 1990, to 6.9 million today.

However, we cannot forget the chilling fact that approximately 19,000 children still die every day from preventable causes. That is one child dying every 5 seconds. Half are children under one year of age. Pneumonia and diarrhea alone account for a third of all child deaths; malnutrition plays a role in a third of child deaths.

We believe that number should be ZERO! Getting to Zero involves everyone pitching in, including the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government’s annual contribution to UNICEF is part of America’s global investment in children. This funding enables UNICEF to partner with the United States to save and improve the lives of children around the world.


Every fiscal year, the U.S. Congress must pass appropriations to fund U.S. Government programs and agencies, including the contribution to UNICEF. UNICEF’s funding appears in the International Organizations and Programs Account in the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations.

Congress is working on the appropriations for Fiscal Year 2014. Despite the tight budget, the U.S. Government will provide funding for global development programs. We believe that funding should reflect the values of the American people to make children a priority of our international assistance. A child in need knows no politics! That is why we ask the U.S. Congress, at the very least, to maintain the FY 2014 U.S. Government contribution to UNICEF at $132 million.


Contact your Senators and Representatives to urge them to support $132 million for UNICEF in appropriations for FY 2014!

FACT SHEET: The Impact of U.S. Government Support for UNICEF

The U.S. Government’s longstanding and generous support for UNICEF makes a real difference in saving children’s lives:

  • In partnership with the U.S. Government and the American people, UNICEF helped to cut the world’s child mortality rate in half since 1960. But 19,000 children under five die each day from mostly preventable causes, and the U.S. contribution to UNICEF helps UNICEF reach and save more of those children.
  • For more than 50 years, UNICEF has been a world leader in immunizations. In 2012, UNICEF supplied 1.9 billion vaccine doses for 96 countries, and procured half a billion immunization syringes. UNICEF buys vaccines for the GAVI Alliance; and also buys all vaccines and related items for global campaigns not covered by GAVI, including polio eradication, elimination of neonatal and maternal tetanus, and measles control. In addition, UNICEF works in-country to ensure that vaccines safely reach even the poorest children and communities.
  • UNICEF is one of the largest buyers of mosquito nets in the world, delivering 18.5 million bed-nets to 39 countries in 2012; as well as 18.1 million malaria rapid diagnostic test kits.
  • Malnutrition contributes to up to a third of all child deaths, and causes stunting that affects a child’s physical and cognitive development. In 2012, UNICEF procured 29,000 tons of therapeutic foods to treat severely malnourished children, and 271 million sachets of micronutrient powder to boost children’s diets, reaching more than 1.9 million children under age 5 with life-saving treatment..
  • Spearheaded by UNICEF, Rotary International, and others, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative has nearly eliminated polio worldwide, from more than 350,000 cases in 1988 to an estimated 250 in 2012. UNICEF and its partners continue to support immunization campaigns to eradicate once and for all this terrible disease.
  • A global effort led by UNICEF and Kiwanis International increased household use of iodized salt from 20 percent to 70 percent, protecting 84 million newborns from brain damage caused by iodine deficiency, and helping thirty-four countries achieve universal salt iodization. Kiwanis International selected UNICEF as its partner for the current Kiwanis global campaign to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus.
  • Because of its established presence and pre-positioned stocks around the world, UNICEF plays a critical role as a U.S. partner helping children in humanitarian crises. For example, UNICEF provides health, nutrition, water/sanitation, and child protection interventions for hundreds of thousands of children affected by the violence in Syria, both within Syria and in surrounding countries. UNICEF humanitarian programs throughout the region have vaccinated 1.4 million children against measles, ensured that 66,000 children have access to learning programs, provided 200,000 people with access to clean drinking water, and gave 57,000 children access to psychosocial support to deal with the impacts of conflict and displacement.
  • U.S. funding supports UNICEF’s leadership in innovation, including UNICEF’s network of Innovation Labs. For example, UNICEF Uganda’s Innovation Lab helped to develop the Digital Drum, a solar-powered computer kiosk built out of oil drums that provides access to preloaded youth-friendly educational materials, was well as access to the Internet, for isolated youth and their communities. The rugged Digital Drum was chosen as one of Time Magazine’s 50 Best Inventions of 2011.

UNICEF USA Speaks At Congressional Hearing

"We believe that UNICEF is an indispensable partner of the United States on initiatives to save lives and protect vulnerable children around the world."
Lynn Stratford, SVP of Program and Community Engagement, to Congress in March 2013

Download complete testimony [PDF]