World leaders united on June 4 to raise $8.8 billion for global health organization Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance — far surpassing the initiative's original target of $7.4 billion.
The funding will go towards global immunization efforts and work to reduce disease inequality around the world.
Improved access to vaccines has changed the lives of millions of people around the world. Gavi has already protected more than 760 million children — a whole generation — from infectious diseases.
In the lead up to the replenishment conference, Global Citizens took actions calling on world leaders to make commitments to Gavi to help defeat disease inequality and protect every child's future.
Global Citizens helped raise more than $3.4 billion in commitments announced for Gavi's replenishment.
Thanks to the 140,880 Global Citizens who took more than 351,000 actions for the Defeat Disease Together campaign, Australia, Sweden, the Netherlands, France, the United Kingdom, and the European Commission pledged almost 40% of the $8.8 billion total.
The funds raised will allow Gavi to immunize more than 1.1 billion children, saving 22 million lives and halving child mortality in 73 developing countries.
Gavi will be able to maintain routine immunization in developing countries, mitigating the impact of the pandemic and sustaining health systems so that countries can immediately introduce COVID-19 vaccines alongside other essential immunization services.
"Thank you to Global Citizen, and to Global Citizens for helping secure vital commitments for Gavi's third replenishment — specifically from Sweden, Australia, the UK, France, the European Commission, and the Netherlands. This funding will help provide protection for 300 million people against up to 18 deadly diseases," said Gavi's Guillaume Grosso.
The UK Pledged £1.65 Billion Over 2021-2025
The UK, which was the host country for the virtual summit, committed £1.65 billion to Gavi for its replenishment. It is one of Gavi’s six original donors and a longstanding supporter and funder of international development.
"Together, we rise to fulfill the greatest shared endeavor of our lifetime — the triumph of humanity over disease, now and for the generations that follow," UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.
Australia Pledged $300 Million AUD Over 2021-2025
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a commitment of $300 million AUD to Gavi, after 116, 682 individual actions were taken by Global Citizens calling on Australia to help protect millions of children from disease.
The funding will help combat COVID-19 and broader immunization efforts throughout the Indo-Pacific region.
"I’m pleased to announce Australia’s renewed commitment to Gavi — our pledge today is 300 million Australian dollars," Morrison said. "It means people around the world, especially in our Indo-Pacific region, will have access to life-saving vaccines."
#BREAKING: Australia just announced a new $300M AUD funding commitment to @gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. We are SO PROUD to see 🇦🇺 continuously step up for global health. Thank you @MarisePayne, @ScottMorrisonMP, @AlexHawkeMP and @GregHuntMP! ⭕️👏 pic.twitter.com/Gi0bNXLmH4— GlblCtznAU (@GlblCtznAU) June 4, 2020
The Netherlands Pledged €325 Million Over 2021-2030
Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte pledged €325 million over the next 10 years to help save the lives of children worldwide and make sure those in extreme poverty aren't left behind.
The Netherlands is one of the original six donors to Gavi and has steadily increased its strong and long-term political and financial support since its inception in 2000.
France Pledged €250 Million Over 2021-2025
French President Emmanuel Macron pledged an additional €250 million to the Gavi during the summit.
"Making available new vaccines against infectious diseases will allow 8 million lives to be saved over the next five years," Macron said.
France, a G7 member state, has been a donor to Gavi since 2004 and has contributed to the organization through direct contributions to ensure continued financing to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.
Sweden Pledged $34 Million SEK Annually Over 2021-2025
Prime Minister of Sweden Stefan Löfven pledged $34 million SEK per year over the next five years ($1.7 billion SEK) towards Gavi to ensure vaccines reach everyone in need.
"It's crucial that a vaccine does not become a commodity for a few, we need to act collectively and responsibly to ensure an equal distribution of vaccines for COVID-19 — based on needs, not on means," Löfven said.
The European Commission Pledged €300 Million Over 2021-2025
The European Commission committed €300 million during the conference as a result of more than 15,000 individual actions taken by Global Citizens asking European leaders to help every child gain equal action to vaccines.
"In extraordinary times, we need an extraordinary mobilization. It shouldn’t matter where you are born, and how wealthy your family is — vaccination is a universal human right," Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said.
On May 4, the European Union (EU) launched a global pledging marathon in support of the Coronavirus Global Response, successfully raising the €7.5 billion (US$8 billion) needed to urgently develop a COVID-19 vaccine.
The event attracted many pivotal million-dollar pledges from representatives from 52 countries, including 35 heads of state, in support of Gavi's work to protect almost half the world’s children against deadly, preventable infectious diseases.
USD $8.8 billion raised for @Gavi at #GVS2020 today. Thanks to all the world leaders who stepped up to make it happen, including the @UK for hosting, and to the thousands of Global Citizens who took action to make their voices heard. We can #DefeatDiseaseTogether.— Hugh Evans (@Hughcevans) June 4, 2020
An outbreak anywhere is a risk everywhere. By increasing the focus on the world’s most marginalized and vulnerable people — those who are still missing out on essential preventative health interventions — we can more effectively reduce health risks for all.
Thank you Global Citizens for taking more than 351,000 individual actions, helping to contribute $3.4 billion of the $8.8 billion raised to help Gavi reach another 300 million people with life-saving vaccines, preventing 7-8 million future deaths.
Diseases know no borders that is why a fully funded Gavi will ensure equal access to health care and vaccination for all.