September 6, 2018 marked the first general body meeting of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) for the fall of 2018. The presentation began with a quick review of the facts that caused UNICEF to form and their values and aims. 17,000 people die every day, and most of these deaths are preventable and unnecessary. The organization hopes to help as many children and people in need as possible and counter the 3 million deaths happening across the globe every year due to easily preventable diseases and problems.
UNICEF has three different teams within the organization, education, public relations, and fundraising, which are headed by President Alouki Shah and Vice President Madina Tahmas. New members have the option to choose which team they wish to join. If they want to, they may participate in all three. To ensure maximum participation, the teams have introduced a point system whereby members get a certain number of points for each activity and accumulation of these points leads to prizes such as UNICEF merchandise or priority for positions on the executive board in the future. Every member is encouraged to spend as much as time as they can spare helping in various activities.
Moving on, the education team discussed the country of the month, India, which was chosen because of the devastating effects of the floods in Kerala in the last month. Hundreds of people were displaced from their homes as the disaster hit the state, which is known for its serene calmness and beauty, and caused destruction on a huge economic scale. Over 500 people have been confirmed dead and many more are still missing. People have lost their homes and all of their belongings and have nowhere to return to as the river and rains have swept away their homes. Diseases are running rampant in the waters and many people are left without basic facilities such as clean drinking water and sanitation.
The upcoming events for UNICEF include a bowling night on September 20 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Bog for a fundraising event and a volunteering event on September 22 with Kids Enjoy Exercise Now (KEEN) in Chicago where volunteers get to interact with children. For the bowling night, attendees can sign a pledge sheet where they agree to pay anywhere between $0.01 to $0.10 per pin that a specific person knocks down and the entire amount is then donated to help those in Kerala, India to combat the effects of the floods.