Dream Team members who ran in the first sponsored 2005 Toyota Great Ethiopian Run to raise funds for orphans and vulnerable children pulled in more than $18,000 in Sunday’s “Run for Their Dreams” campaign, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said today.
“Run for Their Dreams” launched the fundraising phase of the Campaign organized by the National Orphans and Vulnerable Children Task Force, an umbrella organization that includes UNICEF, UNAIDS, USAID and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and Ethiopian Government departments.
“Our dream is to see an Ethiopia fit for children,” UNICEF Representative Bjorn Ljungqvist said. “Our dream is to see an Ethiopia where all children go to school, an Ethiopia where all children can go to sleep well fed, an Ethiopia where all children are healthy, an Ethiopia where no children are infected by HIV, an Ethiopia where nobody is going to hit any children – where children can play, sing and run free.”
It would cost $275 to provide one child with rent, food, clothes, hygiene supplies and medical services for a year, or $337 with schooling, UNICEF said.
There are an estimated 4.6 million orphans in Ethiopia and the population continues to grow as a result of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The extended family networks which used to care for orphans can no longer cope, resulting in a burgeoning population of street children in urban centres and rising numbers of child-headed households.