Please join Dr. Cao and South Slope Pediatrics raise money for UNICEF, the United Nations program that helped Dr. Cao as a child and millions of other children and mothers in developing countries. During the holidays it is especially important for all of us to remember those families who need our help - those children in areas of conflict, those in crisis, those living in poverty. Dr. Cao wants to share the following personal story of his own experience, so we can all learn about how a little can go such a long way:
"The toys are here! The toys are here!" The kids in the makeshift refugee settlement were all excited. I was 6 and had no idea what had all the other Vietnamese children in the Singaporan in a frenzy. My 13 year-old cousin had me on his shoulders and his 14 year-old brother was toting my 7 year-old brother towards the street. A small, yellow truck cruised through with goods filling the truckbed for all of the children. I saw guitars, helicopters, dolls, and toys I didn't even know existed! The guitar went right past me to some other toddler with a taller cousin (not such tough competition, it WAS a Vietnamese camp, after all). We ended up with a notebook and some writing utensils. I'd like to credit this gift for my academic interest and success, but I keep thinking about the guitar! My mother uses that thin notebook to this day to keep track of important phone numbers and addresses. It had a light yellow cover and a red Unicef logo on the
front. Whenever I see the Unicef logo, I go back to that day in 1979. It wasn't a lot, but it was a tangible symbol to me that people on the other side of the world who had plenty wanted to share with me. They cared about me and wanted to bring me joy, no strings attached.
Many of us see United Way and Unicef commercials intermittently and think to ourselves, "what a nice institution doing nice things." We'd be right, but nice institutions and people need support and funding. In NYC we get a bit jaded by anyone asking for anything for free because we've all been duped by a scam. I will never feel that way about Unicef because I know they show up and they let some 6 year old know that people care about his happiness.
UNICEF fights for the survival and development of all children, in all situations, all of the time. This relentless conviction has propelled UNICEF to help save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization. We believe in a world where there are ZERO starving children; ZERO exploited children; ZERO children denied an education, and ZERO children deprived of clean water. By joining Team UNICEF, you will help us get closer to a day when every child has a safe and healthy childhood.
To learn more visit www.unicefusa.org.