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Vaccines for all: everyone’s business

It was quite remarkable to see how the GAVI Alliance Partners’ Forum that took place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, from December 5-7 2012, brought together national and international leaders, civil society organisations, technical experts, financing agencies, the private sector, prominent politicians and individual from all walks of life to discuss issues that will save more children from vaccine-preventable diseases.

The Partners’ Forum really was a unique opportunity for me to see how Save the Children networks with other institutions to prevent millions of children’s deaths. It truly was a strong demonstration of how saving children’s lives is everyone’s business.

Not immune to meetings

At the start of the forum I was a bit jittery with so many participants from a diverse range of backgrounds.

Over the next three days however, I was comfortable with the strong learning forum that encouraged everybody to share best practices that have contributed to strengthening partnerships and have jointly accelerated results, innovation, sustainability and equity in immunisation coverage.

Sessions during the event included the value of vaccines in health and economic development, national ownership of innovative supply chain technologies, the power of collaboration by regional communities, bridging communities and health systems so as to reach the unreached.

Save the Children receiving the ‘The Rise-Up’ award in recognition of how we championed vaccines and immunisation with the UK government and other donors, leading to the spectacular success of GAVI’s pledging conference in 2011.


My appreciation for Save the Children and my role within the organisation has increased tenfold. It was truly inspiring to listen to speakers from around the world and from different professional backgrounds declaring their commitment to saving more children’s lives from vaccine-preventable diseases.

I left the GAVI Partners’ Forum with increased rigour, enthusiasm and motivation to continue my own efforts in contributing to saving children’s lives.

More importantly, this was an invaluable opportunity to understand the high level of influence that Save the Children has at the global level. The high regard in which we are held has been truly awe-inspiring and has instilled in me a greater sense of purpose and drive.

I truly believe that together we can reach the unreached.


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