UNICEF Ambassador and National Basketball Association (NBA) star Pau Gasol pledged $1,000 for every point he scored at the Los Angeles Lakers game on Friday, November 22, to support critical U.S. Fund for UNICEF fundraising relief efforts in the aftermath of Super Tyhoon Haiyan.
Gasol raised $24,000 for victims of the typhoon.
More than five million children have been affected by the emergency. With every day that goes by, children are becoming weaker and more vulnerable not only to disease, but to trafficking, child labor and violence.
“Children are in desperate need of clean water, medicine and nutrition supplies,” said Gasol, a two-time NBA Champion with the Los Angeles Lakers. “Having seen UNICEF’s incredible work for children firsthand, I want to support them in making a difference for children and families in the Philippines who have lost everything.”
UNICEF’s first priorities are focused on life-saving interventions — getting essential medicines, nutrition supplies, safe water and hygiene supplies to children and families. UNICEF is also preparing to reunite and protect the most vulnerable children who are unaccompanied by adults, and is actively setting up child-friendly spaces where they can learn, play sports, and receive psychosocial support to help restore a sense of normalcy.
“We are always so grateful to Pau Gasol for his unwavering commitment to UNICEF,” said Caryl Stern, President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. “The children in the Philippines need our help now, and in the foreseeable future, so it is critical for us to continue to shine a spotlight on their needs.”
As a UNICEF Ambassador, Pau Gasol has seen UNICEF programs for children in action in several countries around the world including HIV/AIDS-related projects and education initiatives. He has also witnessed UNICEF’s emergency relief work in the Sahel region of Africa, and programs supporting Syrian refugees in Iraq. Gasol has supported UNICEF’s work on behalf of child survival and development for a decade both in the United States and Spain.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Basketball Player’s Association (NBPA) have also teamed up to donate $250,000 to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF in support of UNICEF’s emergency relief efforts in areas of the Philippines ravaged by the devastating typhoon.
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