Activities & Organizations

UNICEF to raise money at banquet

The UH chapter of UNICEF will spotlight world hunger at its banquet Friday.

The banquet will feature UH accounting professor Saleha Khumawala, who will speak about the state of world hunger and children who suffer from malnutrition around the world.

“The startling fact that every five seconds a child dies from hunger related causes means that we have to spread awareness in order to understand this huge inequity and combat it,” UNICEF President Charlene Nguyen said. “We believe every child should have the tools in order to survive. With malnutrition and hunger being the second leading cause of death for children, we want to educate in an experiential, interactive role-playing banquet where people can learn together.”

Nguyen said that the banquet will utilize each audience member’s five senses to give them the feel of going hungry, before they get to eat the food.

This, she said, will leave a lasting impression on the audience that world hunger is a problem that requires immediate action.

The banquet’s proceeds will all go to UNICEF, which will use the money to buy food, medicine, clothes, and other essentials for Haiti.

The entrance fee will be $8 for UH members and $10 for all others.

“We want to support Haiti in this dire time of need because any amount of money counts, and it’s been stated as the biggest humanitarian crisis of our lifetime,” Nguyen said.

Nguyen said the banquet is also being held to educate the student body about UNICEF’s mission.

“Another goal is to increase the prestige and presence of UNICEF at UH,” she said. “We’re backed by an international body that has so much clout in the countries they operate in; we feel that our presence on the campus of UH should be similarly felt. We want everyone on campus to know about the great life-saving work we do for children.”

Nguyen said UNICEF expects to raise at least $800, but hopes to raise even more with a huge turnout.

UNICEF was originally created by the United Nations on Dec. 11, 1946 to provide emergency relief to children whose home countries had been destroyed during World War II.

The organization receives most of its support from government funding and private donors.

It has established programs all over the world to promote the health and well-being of children.

Athletes such as LeBron James and Steve Nash are UNICEF supporters. The National Basketball Association’s “NBA Cares” program partnered with UNICEF to promote a global campaign against HIV/AIDS.

UNICEF’s reputation and prestige has been well documented throughout its existence. The organization won a Nobel Peace Prize in 1965.

The organization’s main office of administration is based in New York, where relief efforts are planned and executed.

Unlike most non-profits, it is an intergovernmental organization, which serves 190 countries. This provides a huge network, allowing governments to send relief to different countries without resistance.

UNICEF also promotes artistic creativity with its program, Art in All of Us. The goal of this program is to promote the universal language of art in different U.N.-listed countries.

UH has a diverse student body, which could help UNICEF recruit more members throughout this year.

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