Partnerships and Innovation Help UNICEF Deliver Results for Children in 150 Countries

July 24, 2019

In 2018, UNICEF reached nearly half the world’s children with vaccines; provided 13.3 million bed nets and nearly 50,000 metric tons of ready-to-use food

COPHENHAGEN / NEW YORK (July 24, 2019) – In 2018, UNICEF procured $3.486 billion worth of goods and services to help children in 150 countries live better lives around the world.

Vaccines, clothes, medicines, education kits and school books are some of the goods and services that helped children fight disease, learn, and grow – especially in countries affected by emergencies and conflicts.

In 2018, UNICEF helped children by:

  • Procuring 2.36 billion doses of vaccines to fight a variety of diseases including measles, diphtheria, tetanus and HPV, and reach nearly half the world’s children
  • Providing children access to safe water with 1.26 billion water purification tablets and chlorination/flocculation sachets
  • Protecting children from mosquito-borne diseases using 13.3 million bed nets
  • Treating children suffering from malnutrition with 47,760 metric tons of ready-to-use therapeutic food
  • Helping children get back in the classroom with 4.5 million schoolbags and 84,000 education kits

“Every child is unique and so are their needs,” said Etleva Kadilli, Director of UNICEF’s Supply Division in Copenhagen. “Procuring supplies for children is not as simple as buying products off the shelf. It requires close collaboration with diverse partners to ensure children in different countries and areas get what they need to live, improve their lives, and be safe and healthy.”

As situations in countries become more complex, especially during emergencies, the ability to adapt and do things differently can help to maximize impact for children and their families.

Together with a global network of stakeholders, UNICEF is developing new products and approaches to meet the needs of the hardest-to-reach. This isn’t limited to product innovation alone, but also includes working with partners, especially businesses, to influence markets and make products for children more accessible, affordable, safe and sustainable.

For example:

  • To help children recover from malnutrition, UNICEF procured a record 65 percent of ready-to-use therapeutic food from manufacturers located in or close to countries with the greatest need. This not only supported local economies but also made transportation more efficient and reduced the carbon footprint.
  • In the Syrian Arab Republic, despite the conflict, UNICEF is working with local businesses that continue to operate to provide hygiene and education kits, as well as warm clothes – helping UNICEF deliver supplies to children quickly.
  • In Nigeria, UNICEF convened a landmark Regional Sanitation Industry Consultation to encourage cross-border collaboration with Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire and identify ways to improve the availability of affordable toilets and sanitation services for families.

“The support of governments, businesses, donors and our partners on the ground has been invaluable in allowing us to reach millions of children as quickly as possible”, added Kadilli. “Yet the needs remain immense. Sustainable, long-term funding must continue to be a priority for us to meet the needs of children in increasingly complex situations.”


#  #  #


Notes to Editors
More information on how UNICEF have made a difference in the lives of children in 2018 can be found in the UNICEF Supply Annual Report 2018. Photos from the report can be found here.


The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to put children first. UNICEF has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more. UNICEF USA supports UNICEF's work through fundraising, advocacy and education in the United States. Together, we are working toward the day when no children die from preventable causes and every child has a safe and healthy childhood. For more information, visit


For more information, contact
Ann Reinking Whitener, UNICEF USA, 212 922 2623,