LONDON, 10 August 2014 – With your help, our partnership with the Commonwealth Games has raised a fantastic £5 million for children across the Commonwealth – that’s amazing! But now the Games are over, lots of you are asking how that money’s going to be used to help put children first. So here’s our answer to this and some more of your questions.  If you want to know more, just add your question in the comments section.

1. How much have you raised in total?

We have raised a magnificent £5m to save and change children’s lives across the Commonwealth.

2. How much of this was raised on Opening Ceremony night?

An amazing £2.5 million was raised in just 40 minutes after James McAvoy and Sir Chris Hoy called on all those watching to donate £5 to UNICEF by SMS during the Opening Ceremony.

3. How are you going to spend this money?

The donations raised will enable us to achieve our stated ambition of reaching every child in Scotland and children in every Commonwealth country by the time of the next games take place in 2018. We will do this in a number of ways. For example:

  • In Bangladesh, we’re tackling child labour and child marriage by helping to keep the most at-risk children at school
  • In Malawi, we’re using sport and education to engage with young people and help reduce HIV infection
  • In Scotland, we’re helping ensure all new born babies get  the best start in life, supporting a strong, nurturing bond between parents and their babies.

Thanks to the ongoing generosity of our supporters we’ll be able to achieve even more than this! We’ll be talking to our UNICEF colleagues across the Commonwealth to understand where this money can best be used to put children first.

4. What happens now?

Our colleagues in each Commonwealth region are already using money raised through the partnership to save and change thousands of children’s lives. Now, we’ll be working with the Commonwealth Games Federation and Glasgow 2014 to understand how best to use the money raised from the Opening Ceremony to benefit disadvantaged children across the Commonwealth. We’ll also continue to work hard to raise more money and advocate for change so as to give the one billion children of the Commonwealth the best possible future.

5. How much of the money raised will be spent in Scotland?

The £5 million already raised will enable us to achieve our stated ambition to reach every child in Scotland through our work in education and health. We’ll give a copy of Baby, I Love You, an illustrated baby book, to every new mum over the next four years. This beautiful book supports strong, nurturing relationships that we know lead to happier, healthier babies.

In addition, we’ve just launched the Child Rights Launchpad, a new website with resources, which will be offered free to every school between now and 2018, to help children understand their rights and lead happier and healthier lives.

6. How many children will this help?

It’s hard to put a figure on this at this stage. We’ve already reached thousands of children through projects in each region of the Commonwealth, and by extending our work in the next four years we’ll be able to reach even more children in each Commonwealth country.

7. How have the athletes been involved?

We were delighted that the athletes were such a part of our fundraising moment during the Opening Ceremony, underlining the immense power of sport in saving and children’s lives across the world. During the Games we had a constant presence in the athletes’ village and it was great to see so many athletes helping spread the word on Twitter, and learning and engaging with our work using sport to benefit the lives of children in their own country. We want to build closer relationships with athletes as inspirational role models for children in Commonwealth countries.

8. You say this is the beginning of the partnership – what do you mean by that?

This is the first time a charity has been so integrated into a major sporting event, but we believe there is so much more that could be done to benefit children in the long term. We’re already working with the Commonwealth Games Federation to see how we can get Commonwealth Games Associations involved in the projects that UNICEF will deliver using the money raised at Glasgow 2014. Both parties are keen to explore how we can take the partnership to new heights in the coming years.

9. Can you give an example of one of UNICEF’s projects in the Commonwealth?

Of course! Check out this video of our Breaking Barriers project in Jamaica, which helps children and young people build leadership skills.

Through projects like this, we’ll reach children in every Commonwealth country – and the more money we raise, the more children we will be able to reach.

You can still donate donate online to our Put Children First appeal.