Former Monty Python star and world traveller Michael Palin took the wraps off a British Airways plane carrying a special logo to mark £25 million
raised by its passengers for UNICEF last Friday. The aircraft, an Airbus A319, then took to the skies over the weekend bearing the new logo
when it flew to Munich.
UNICEF and British Airways have worked together on the Change for Good programme for 14 years, raising money to transform the lives of
some of the world’s most vulnerable children. The money raised has made a huge difference to the lives of hundreds of thousands of children in
over 50 countries that UNICEF works in around the world, thanks to small change donated by customers travelling onboard British Airways
Palin, who has seen UNICEF’s work first-hand, said, "I'm delighted to be able to celebrate the Change for Good Campaign reaching a
landmark of £25 million. This hugely generous amount, raised over the last fourteen years, will have helped to change the lives of thousands of
children across the world, and everyone who has donated their spare change can feel justifiably proud.
“I should also thank all those BA staff who have done so much to encourage people to contribute. I hope that these planes will fly the flag for
Change for Good around the world, and that those who fly in them will keep up this fine tradition of generosity."
The first country to benefit from monies raised through the programme was Tanzania, where Change for Good money was used to fund water
and sanitation projects at a time when the country was experiencing severe drought. Amongst the work that took place was the building of a
new water pump, benefiting over 7,500 villagers, 170 local volunteer staff and 400 students at Mubondo secondary school.
In recent years, UNICEF work funded by Change for Good has included a HIV and AIDS prevention project in schools across Ghana and
outreach projects for street children in Cairo, offering them proper meals, a basic education and somewhere to play.
Change for Good money is also vital in helping UNICEF’s work in emergencies. Earlier this year, in response to the humanitarian crisis in
Myanmar (Burma), £300,000 was donated to UNICEF’s emergency relief efforts, helping to provide life-saving supplies such as water purification
tablets, drugs, essential medicines and tarpaulins to children left homeless.
Robert Webb, General Counsell British Airways,
said, “We couldn’t have achieved any of this without the generosity of our customers – and the
commitment of our dedicated cabin crew and specifically the BA UNICEF champions.
“It just goes to show that small change can make a big money and save the lives of some of the world’s most disadvantaged children.”
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