2020 is a year that on the whole, I feel so many of us would rather forget. It has thrown up new challenges at every turn and has seen many of us tested in ways we simply never saw coming.
I mean, how could we? Who five years ago was sitting in an interview, having been asked that stereotypical question and replied “sheltering at home from a global plague”.
Indeed if you did answer that correctly I feel several governments probably have some questions for you. In fact so do I, but mine mainly revolves around lottery numbers. While 2020 has had a profound impact on all of us, it may be years before we know what the actual affects it had on the developing world were. If in fact we ever do.
When events like this occur, when any tragic and catastrophic event occurs, we all too often see governments put up walls and put their own citizens first. A response which is understandable. However, we also see the way people come together, from towns, to counties and states and then onto nations. A joining that underlines the fact that we are one single global community.
With news of a vaccine showing great promise and orders being placed, Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance, has raised over $2bn for their Gavi COVAX AMC. This is a financing mechanism that will support access for low and middle-income economies to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. COVAX is an unprecedented collaboration to accelerate the development, production and equitable access to test, treatments and vaccines. As of 31 July 2020 a total of ninety-two low and middle-income economies will be able to access vaccines through Gavi’s COVAX AMC.
The President of the European Commission pledged €100million, which is in addition to the €400million in guarantees approved by the European Investment Bank. Likewise, France has stated that the €100million pledged at the Global Vaccine Summit on 4 June will also go towards the Gavi COVAX AMC. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has to date pledged a total of $156m, along with the Republic of Korea pledging $10m.
Nations, foundations, companies, charities and individuals have contributed in some way to see to it that there is fair access to a vaccine that could help control the spread of this insidious disease. Endeavouring to see that COVID-19 doesn’t see its shadow cast any further. It has been a hard slog, for all of us, a year-long uphill battle. However, there is at least some relief on the horizon it seems. As light starts to show through the dense clouds that hung over 2020 it is the job of every single one of us to ensure that with humanity as a whole, that nobody gets left behind.