For the past several years, a select group of Champions for Children have had the opportunity to travel to the field with UNICEF to see first-hand the impact your Change for Good collections are having on lives of children. The field visit destinations have been based on where Champions voted to allocate a portion of funding collected the prior year. Below you can read about the experience Champions have had in Chile, Belize, Honduras, the Dominican Republic, and Brazil over the last few years and learn about the impact the coins and notes you collect in-flight and at the workplace are making in the lives of vulnerable children around the world.
2014—Roughly $273,000 collected in 2012 is supporting UNICEF's water, sanitation, and hygiene programs in rural southern Colombia
Nominate a Champion for the 2013 Change for Good Champions of the Year peer nomination contest by January 31st, 2014, and you can be included in a lottery to attend the Colombia field visit! Click here for details.
2013—Roughly $200,000 collected in 2011 supported UNICEF's programs for children in favelas de Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
In Spring 2012, you overwhelmingly voted to send approximately $200,000 of the 2011 Change for Good on American Airlines collections to help provide a safe living environment for impoverished children and adolescents in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In April 2013, Champions Martin Beltran, Ernest Max Mierbeth, Alexandra Pedreros, and Sean Nowicke visited these projects first-hand. Click here to read about Martin’s experience.
Today, about 80% of the Brazilian population lives in urban areas. Many families live in favelas (shanty towns) on the outskirts of the city where conditions are extremely difficult, there is extreme poverty, and families experience higher rates of health problems and violence. In the past, these favelas were controlled by drug lords, but great progress is being made to remove the drug lords and clean up the living conditions for women and children.
As part of its efforts to clean up these areas, through funding for this project, UNICEF worked with adolescents in Rio de Janeiro to map out the risks and challenges they face in their favelas and actively engaged them in finding the solutions of how to address these issues, such as access to clean water and sanitation, and emergency preparedness, including their ability to respond to flooding, the quality of the infrastructure, and evacuation plans.
Through support of this program, Champions helped UNICEF lift children and adolescents out of poverty, working to make these favelas a safe environment for children to grow and thrive in, giving them a chance to have a safe, happy childhood, free of fear and violence.
2012—Child Protection in the Dominican Republic
Champions voted overwhelmingly to send a portion of 2010 collections—roughly $200,000—to support UNICEF’s child protection programs in the Dominican Republic.
In March 2012, Champions Adriann Raschdorf-Nelson (JFK), Andrea Hackim (IMA), Monika Kennel (IMA), and Evelyn Cordova (JFK) witnessed UNICEF’s work for children in Santo Domingo, Mamá Tingó and Santiago.
Since their visit, UNICEF and partners have been hard at work changing and improving children's lives with the funds you collected. Here is a quick snap shot of some of the ways your collections are helping children:
- 407 Haitian children were reunited with their families after their displacement following the Haiti earthquake.
- 5,000 undocumented children and adolescents were registered, receiving birth certificates for the first time, which give them a legal identity and access to health and social services.
- Over 12,000 children and tour operators received training handbooks to help prevent commercial sexual exploitation.
- Over 36,000 teachers and school counselors received training on positive discipline and non-violent techniques to reduce corporal punishment practices in schools.