The World Health Organisation (WHO) has created a new public fundraising campaign and fund to help fight the COVID-19 coronavirus. The COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund is a partnership between WHO, the United Nations Foundation and the Swiss Philanthropy Fund.
The World Health Organisation is leading and coordinating the global effort, supporting countries to prevent, detect, and respond to the pandemic.
The COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund enables individuals, corporations, foundations, and other organisations around the world directly to support WHO’s global work to help countries in the fight against the coronavirus.
The fund places some limitations on which donations it will accept. “Donors must abide by the UN Foundation’s or Swiss Philanthropy Foundation’s due diligence policies (which, among other things, prohibits the receipt of funds from alcohol, firearms, and tobacco industries)”.
As outlined in the COVID-19 Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan the vast majority of the financial resources needed will help vulnerable and at-risk countries, especially those with weak health systems.
According to the plan there is an immediate funding need of at least US$675 million to the end of April 2020.
To cover its administrative charges, Swiss Philanthropy Foundation will take a contribution of 4% for amounts donated through its sheltered fund.
Facebook’s matched giving
Already Facebook has confirmed that it will match up to $10 million in donations. It confirmed that “100% of funds will directly support the work to prevent, detect and respond to the outbreak around the world”.
It has of course created a COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fundraiser using its Facebook fundraising tools. You might have seen the campaign on your Facebook feed already. At publication £2.3 million of the £8.1 million target had been donated.
In announcing the $10m matched fund, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also confirmed that Facebook would match another $10 million for the CDC Foundation, which will launch a fundraising campaign in the next few weeks focused on combating the outbreak in the USA.
Facebook is also supporting the global public health community’s work to keep people safe and informed with information and links to reliable information.
Other major appeals to fight COVID-19
There are other established appeals to help tackle COVID-19. The Kaiser Family Foundation is tracking donations.
For example, as of 9 March 2020, it reported that:
“donors (including governments, multilateral organisations, and private funders) have pledged or distributed an estimated $8.3 billion in overall financial support for the COVID-19 response. This includes donor assistance provided directly to countries as well as their contributions to the World Health Organization.”
The information the foundation is listing and updating is:
“publicly available information on donor funding to date. Not included are funding from governments for their own domestic response efforts or commitments focused on economic stimulus or recovery efforts related to the outbreak (such as a $6 billion commitment from the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation or a $50 billion commitment, including $10 billion in zero-interest loans for low-income countries, from the International Monetary Fund).”
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