You can all relax and go about your business. At long last, we’re clearly going to have this pandemic thing under control presently because none of than Time Person of the Year Greta Thunberg is on the case. And she’s putting her money where her mouth is this time… sort of.
In all seriousness, this is a rare occasion when I can highlight the activities of the pretentious teen without mocking her. Or at least without mocking her too much. For once, she is using the international platform she has somehow established to do something that’s definitely positive. She’s making a significant donation to UNICEF to help them support children during the novel coronavirus pandemic and attempting to encourage others to do the same. (Washington Times)
Climate activist Greta Thunberg is launching a campaign with a Danish foundation to help finance the U.N. childrens’ agency’s emergency program to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
Thunberg said in a statement that “like the climate crisis, the coronavirus pandemic is a child-rights crisis” that will affect youngsters now and in the long-term, especially the most vulnerable.
She urged people everywhere “to step up and join me in support of UNICEF’s vital work to save children’s lives, to protect health and continue education.”
The details of this effort don’t look too bad, at least on the surface. Thunberg is making a $100,000 dollar donation to the children’s agency, and that’s not chump change. Of course, when you look further into the details, it’s not as if she’s taking it out of her own pocket or those of her parents. The cash came from a humanitarian award she received from a Danish foundation called Human Act. The group is also making a matching $100K donation to UNICEF. But to be fair, there was nothing stopping her from just keeping the money, so that was generous of her.
Her focus on the needs of children during this pandemic isn’t really misguided either. It’s true that young, relatively healthy children are still deemed the least likely to die or experience the most brutal symptoms if they contract COVID-19, but the effect on their families can certainly be extreme. This is particularly true among minorities and everyone in developing nations. So there’s definitely a need for more help for children around the world.
Is UNICEF the best charitable outfit to tackle the job? Surprisingly, they receive the highest possible rating from Charity Navigator in terms of transparency and accountability. Of course, they aren’t without their own problems at times, specifically when it comes to child sexual abuse, but there really aren’t any portions of the United Nations that don’t generate those sorts of awful headlines. Still, UNICEF is probably one of the least scandal-prone arms of the UN and it’s impossible to argue the good work they have done in the past.
Keeping all of that in mind, I’ll give a thumbs up to Thunberg’s push to help children around the world during this pandemic. But if she really wants to play with the adults in the global influence game (she’ll be turning 18 next January, after all), perhaps she could throw her social media weight around by tackling the real source of this catastrophe. I look forward to her next speech where she bellows “How Dare You” at… China.