Microsoft's gift helps UNICEF aid children in Iran

UNICEF relief efforts in Bam, Iran supported through $75,000 gift

NEW YORK (January 19, 2004) — UNICEF today received a $75,000 gift from Microsoft to assist in relief efforts in the earthquake ravaged region of Bam, Iran. The gift will help to provide health care, clothing, shelter, clean water, and education services for children affected by the disaster.

The earthquake in Bam has resulted in 28,000 registered deaths, the number of injured has reached 30,000 and 70,000 have been left homeless. Approximately 1,800 children have been orphaned and left with little more than the clothing on their backs.

"Tens of thousands of children watched their world crumble around them," said UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy. "Their needs are vast and urgent — everything from food, clean water, and shelter from the cold to assistance finding relatives and overcoming the trauma of the experience."

UNICEF has already flown in 416 "School in a Box" kits, each of which contains school supplies and education materials for up to 80 students plus supplies for the teacher. Ensuring educational activities is a way to give children a sense of normalcy. UNICEF continues to advocate for first focusing classroom activities on easing the emotional pains of children using simple play and recreational activities.

UNICEF's emergency relief efforts are addressing both the immediate and long-term needs of the people of Iran. Gifts such as those made by Microsoft provide urgent aid including:

  • School-in-a-box kits: $300 can provide one school-in-a-box kit to provide basic education to 80 children during times of crisis to allow them to continue their education.
  • Emergency health kits: $5.00 can provide an emergency health kit for one person for three months. It contains medical supplies and drugs to cover the basic health needs for the injured.
  • Tents: $250 can provide one tent for a single family to use for lodging of those whose homes were destroyed.
  • Emergency purification and filter units: $58.94 can provide one emergency purification and filter unit to purify small amounts of water, making it safe to drink, in little time.

Founded in 1946, UNICEF helps save, protect and improve the lives of children around the world through immunization, education, health care, nutrition, clean water, and sanitation. UNICEF is non-partisan and its cooperation is free of discrimination. In everything it does, the most disadvantaged children and the countries in greatest need have priority.

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