This week, UNICEF UK launched a new campaign to raise funds for weak and starving children affected by the food crisis across East Africa. The world’s largest children’s organisation is asking the British public to share a little of what they have by texting to donate £5 and by spreading the story of the ‘Children’s Famine’ on Facebook and other social networking sites.

To mark the launch of ‘It’s Time to Share’, a group of children gathered in Parliament Square in London earlier this week. Caitlin Donnelly, 8, from Durham, Haydon Derrick, 9, from Wigan and Roda Ibrahim, 9, Ridwan Ibrahim and Ramla Abdi, 5, all from East London, emptied £5 from piggy banks for the cause to encourage the British public to donate £5 by texting the word SHARE to 78866.

Following the worst drought for 50 years, malnourished children desperately need help. So far UNICEF only has 40% of the funds they need to make sure children across East Africa get the food, clean water and healthcare they need to survive for the next six months.

UNICEF UK Deputy Executive Director Anita Tiessen said, “One girl or boy is dying of starvation every six minutes in Somalia. We urgently need the British public to share a little of what they have – £5 can feed a child for a week.

“The clock is ticking for children across East Africa - everything must be done to reach those in the worst affected regions as quickly as possible to prevent more children from dying.

“I am appealing to the UK public to please give generously to our appeal. The more people share, the more children’s lives UNICEF can save.”

UNICEF is the biggest provider of life-saving food for malnourished children in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti but needs more funds urgently to reach the millions of children affected by the food crisis.

As part of the ‘It’s Time to Share’ campaign, UNICEF UK Ambassador and actor Ewan McGregor has produced an appeal film which is being shown online, on TV and in cinemas across the UK.

To help save children’s lives please text the word SHARE to 78866 or donate online at


UNICEF has been operating across Somalia since 1971.  We have never been banned and never stopped working in the South.  We are the largest supplier of therapeutic and supplementary nutrition in the country. Despite the challenges to a country torn apart by conflict, insecurity and poverty, UNICEF and its partners, is delivering for children.  In the South, we operate through a network of 70 non-government partners and deploy third party monitors to ensure that supplies reach children


UNICEF is the world’s leading organisation working for children and their rights in more than 190 countries. As champion of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, UNICEF works to help every child realise their full potential. Together with our partners, UNICEF delivers health care, nutrition, education and protection to children in urgent need, while working with governments to ensure they deliver on their promise to protect and promote the rights of every child. UNICEF relies entirely on voluntary donations from individuals, governments, institutions and corporations, and is not funded by the UN budget. For more information, please visit