On July 12, 2021, Canadian Minister of International Development Karina Gould, announced that Canada will donate an additional 18 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX). The Minister also announced that Canada will match, dollar for dollar, donations made by Canadians to UNICEF Canada’s COVID-19 vaccination fundraising campaign up to a maximum of CA$10 million (US$8 million).
The 18 million doses will be administered through a newly-funded COVAX Dose Sharing mechanism. The UNICEF fund matching campaign, “Give a Vax” will run until September 6, 2021. A fully funded matching fund campaign would cover COVID-19 vaccination costs of approximately 4 million people worldwide. Funds raised will enable UNICEF to cover the cost to transport vaccines to countries in need, keep vaccines viable, and train health care workers to administer vaccines, among other costs. This announcement builds on the more than CA$2.5 billion (US$2.0 billion) that Canada has already committed to supporting the global response to COVID-19.