The United Reformed Church (URC) is trying to raise £5,000 for its ‘Give Thanks for Your Vaccine’ fundraising campaign, developed with Christian Aid.
So far, £1,300 has been raised.
In the UK, nearly 18million people have had their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine. But for the poorest and most vulnerable communities across the world, there is little hope of a vaccine rollout. These are people who already face lack of water, food, and basic healthcare.
Christian Aid is already on the ground, helping keep people safe from coronavirus with practical support, but with donations, the charity can do more.
To help the charity, the URC’s fundraising campaign aims to help people show gratitude for their vaccines and help to protect its global neighbours while the vaccine is out of reach.
The Revd Dr Kevin Snyman, URC Commitment for Life Programme Officer, explains: “Although some pharmaceutical companies have promised not to profit from COVID vaccines, the fact remains that many of our Commitment for Life partner regions, already facing the hard edge of climate disruption, must deal not only a shortage of vaccines, but also the turbulent dangers of debt that will be required to pay for protection against Covid-19.”
Earlier this month, the UK government had been urged to start sharing its vaccine supplies after analysis revealed that out of the 120 million vaccines rolled out to date, 70% of these were administered in the 50 richest countries around the world. It has also been reported that countries like South Africa needed to buy doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine at nearly two-and-a-half times higher than most European countries.
Francis Brienen, URC Deputy General Secretary (Mission) added: “The URC is deeply concerned about the unfair rollout of Covid vaccines around the world. Once again, the poorest and most vulnerable people are being pushed to the back of the queue, with only two percent of the world’s population vaccinated so far – the vast majority of them in the richest countries. We must and can do better.”
All donations will support Christian Aid’s response to the coronavirus pandemic in affected communities around the world, including Commitment for Life – the URC’s global justice programme’s – partner regions.
Dr Snyman added: “We must face up to the awful realisation that the URC’s Commitment for Life and Council for World Mission partner regions are being forced to the back of the vaccine line.
“This is simply wrong on so many levels. We know that coronaviruses – like very rich people – do not overly concern themselves with borders. They travel the world without a care in the world. Ignoring the poor is not only immoral, it’s a spectacular own goal. When viruses are left to multiply, their mutations render existing vaccines potentially weakened and ineffectual. Vaccine-selfishness benefits nobody.”
If you or your family member has received a vaccine and would like to express your gratitude and help the campaign, please make a donation here.