Thanks to our donors WHO’s lifesaving work during COVID-19 reaches all corners of the world

Quite simply, without support from its many donors WHO would not be able to carry out its lifesaving activities and play a leading role in navigating the world through the COVID-19 pandemic and other emergencies.

WHO is grateful for the funding received so far from all contributors . Thanks to its Member States, Foundations, other multilateral and private sector organizations and individuals, WHO has been able to work tirelessly to keep people safe everywhere, even in some of the remotest parts of the world.

While all contributions are welcome and appreciated, flexible donations are essential for our work. These flexible funds that WHO receives from many generous donors allow us to be agile and strategic to work when, where and on what is needed the most. These funds are critical to deliver on necessary work, across all pillars of the response, both at headquarters and in country offices all over the globe. Examples are activities like developing guidelines, engaging with communities and religious leaders, advising on national pandemic strategies, translating information, running health and mental health awareness campaigns, facilitating intra-regional cooperation, performing media outreach, and more. Even when WHO deploys funds which are earmarked for certain purposes, like buying PPE, WHO still needs to use flexible funds to ensure that the purchase takes place, the equipment is delivered and is used appropriately to ultimately save lives.

Here’s a roundup of some recent work possible thanks to our donors’ contributions:

©WHO / Cote d’Ivoire

Fighting misinformation through radio in Côte d’Ivoire

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, misinformation has continued to undermine the global response and has jeopardized measures to control the pandemic. In Côte d’Ivoire, WHO is working with radio stations — radio and TV reach 99% of the population — across the country to relay COVID-19 guidance and to inform listeners about the disease. WHO has recently used radio to fight misinformation include Burkina Faso, Kenya, Uganda and many other countries.

Advising governments about next phase of the pandemic and opening schools

Europe’s anti-COVID-19 measures during the first phases of the crisis were largely successful. Now the continent is facing a resurgence of cases. WHO plays a crucial role in coordinating and advising the response among countries including providing advice about school, business and event re-openings. WHO regional offices in Africa, the Americas, South-East Asia, the Eastern Mediterranean, Europe, and the Western Pacific have all played a strong coordination and advisory role throughout the pandemic.

©WHO / Tatiana Almeida

Engaging with communities to stop the spread of COVID-19

Communities play an important role in protecting their members from COVID-19. Reporting early via a strengthened community surveillance system is crucial to saving lives. We have published stories recently about how we have engaged with communities in countries such as Lao’s People’s Democratic Republic, Uganda, Haiti and many others.

Supporting a new government to tackle the pandemic in Argentina

A new government took office in mid-December 2019 as the pandemic was about to unfold. WHO has been there to support the government at all levels of its response from issuing tailored guidance to build the capacity of the responders, developing protocols, procuring supplies, disseminating information and providing other critical support. WHO has issued valuable guidance available to all Member States since the beginning of the pandemic.

Supporting mental health

WHO provided remote psychological first aid training to participants from several organizations working in the field of mental health and psychosocial support. The training introduced the principles of providing psychological care using phones or social media outlets. Other recent COVID-19 mental health support programmes have been implemented, sometimes online to comply with the requirements of distancing in the Caribbean region, across countries in Europe, in Iraq, South Sudan, Syria and many other countries.

©WHO / Gilliane Soupe

Creating a digital platform showing where support is needed the most

WHO’s recently developed COVID-19 Partners Platform provides a digital space where governments, UN agencies, and partners can plan and coordinate together in one place. The platform has helped WHO coordinate its activities in way that is user-friendly, country-focused, and data-driven in real time. The platform also shows countries’ response plans, resource gaps and donor allocations. So far countries have expressed their needs in billions of dollars to fight COVID-19 and donors have responded.

Without the support of donors and partners, WHO would not be able to reach these communities in need and help them make it through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thank you to the 31 Member States and other organizations whose flexible contributions to the WHO COVID-19 response make work like this possible:

(order by amount of contributions)

Germany, United Kingdom, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, China, Denmark, Azerbaijan, Canada, Netherlands, Italy, Ireland, France, Sweden, Republic of Korea, Norway, Spain, Japan, Finland, Serbia, Australia, Singapore, Liechtenstein, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Luxembourg, Iceland, Cyprus, Estonia, Latvia, Republic of Slovenia, Portugal and Viet Nam.

Thank you all other countries, organizations and individuals contributing to the COVID-19 response around the world.

(*in alphabetical order)

African Development Bank, Alwaleed Foundation, Austria, Bangladesh, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bulgaria, CAF, Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), Côte d’Ivoire, COVID MPTF, COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, European Commission, Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance, Guinea, Holy See, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Islamic Development Bank, King Baudouin Foundation, Kuwait, Lithuania, New Zealand, Novartis International AG, OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID), Pandemic Tech, Texas, Standard Chartered Bank, Switzerland, Tetra Pak Export FZE, Thailand, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), UNDP/UNOSS, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), UNFCU Foundation, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), United States, Vital Strategies/Resolve to Save Lives, World Bank, World Bank/PEF, Croatia, European Commission, Germany, GFATM, Pacific Health Officers’ Association, Russian Federation, UNDP, and World Bank/PEF.

More information about donors and partners contributing to the COVID-19 response.

You can donate today




The World Health Organization provides global leadership in public health within the United Nations system. Founded in 1948, WHO works with 194 Member States, across six regions and from more than 150 offices, to promote health, keep the world safe and serve the vulnerable.

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