Australian Cricket will throw its support behind the India COVID-19 Crisis Appeal, with Cricket Australia, the Australian Cricketers’ Association and UNICEF Australia partnering to raise much needed funds.
Australian Cricket has been deeply saddened by the devastation caused by this second coronavirus wave to hit India, a country with which Australians share a strong friendship and connection.
UNICEF Australia’s India COVID-19 Crisis Appeal is procuring and installing Oxygen Generation Plants in hospitals to treat seriously ill patients, providing testing equipment in heavily impacted districts and supporting acceleration of the COVID-19 vaccination roll out.
Cricket Australia will make an initial donation of $50,000 and encourage Australians everywhere to give generously at this critical time in India’s COVID-19 response.
Nick Hockley, Cricket Australia’s Interim CEO, said Australian Cricket stood with India.
“Australians and Indians share a special bond and, for many, our mutual love of cricket is central to that friendship,” Hockley said.
“It has been distressing and saddening to learn of the suffering of so many of our Indian sisters and brothers during the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic and our hearts go out to everyone impacted.
“We were all deeply moved by the sentiments expressed and donations given by Pat Cummins and Brett Lee over the past week.
“In that same spirit, we are proud to partner with UNICEF Australia to raise funds that will help the people of India by providing the health system with much needed oxygen, testing equipment and vaccines.”
In welcoming the partnership with Australian Cricket, UNICEF Australia CEO Tony Stuart said he was heartened that a major sport such as cricket, and its players, who have had a long relationship with India, and its people, recognised this urgent need to act now.
“We know that sport has the power to bring people together and there has never been a more important time,” Stuart said.
“UNICEF has been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic and as the world’s largest children’s charity we know the devastating and life-long consequences this emergency will have, in particular, on children and young people.
“During the first wave of the virus in the country, children and families saw the collapse of their livelihoods with hundreds of millions of children pushed further into poverty, losing their education, facing heightened risk of abuse and experiencing the devastation of seeing caregivers fall ill or die.
“We thank Australian Cricket for acting now as it is leadership like this which will help beat COVID for all.”
Donations to UNICEF Australia’s India COVID-19 Crisis Appeal can be made at https://india.unicef.org.au/t/australian-cricket.