Canada sets strong example but G8 yet to step up for the world's poorest
women and children

- Development leaders call for renewed global push heading towards MDG Summit -

TORONTO, June 25 /CNW/ - Canada laid down a marker in support of the world's poorest women and children by announcing $1.1 billion in new funding towards maternal, newborn and child health. This money will contribute concretely towards reducing the number of women and children dying in the developing world and we applaud Canada for its contribution.

While Canada's investment is strong, the $5 billion total pledged by other G8 leaders falls short of what is urgently needed from the G8 to accelerate progress towards achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDG) 4 and 5 by 2015. We are encouraged to see others, beyond the G8, already contributing to carry the momentum forward. The longer it takes to fill the more than $30 billion MDG funding gap for maternal, newborn and child health the more lives will be lost.

Moving forward, the G8 Accountability report will be an important mechanism to keep track of past promises as well as those made today. It will help ensure that the Muskoka Initiative, alongside previous G8 commitments, can be held to account, not only in terms of funds allocated, but in terms of lives saved.

We call on Canada to leverage today's commitment for a renewed push to increase momentum towards the full achievement of all MDG goals at the UN Summit in September.

The Canadian Coalition for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health formed in 2009 to support the inclusion of maternal, newborn and child health as a signature development theme for the 2010 Muskoka G8. It consists of six Canadian non-government organizations: CARE Canada, Plan Canada, RESULTS Canada, Save the Children Canada, World Vision Canada and UNICEF Canada.

SOURCE Plan Canada

For further information: For further information: Kieran Green, CARE Canada, 613-799-7562; Cicely McWilliam, Save the Children Canada, 647-291-1683; Kristy Payne, Plan Canada, 416-568-6525; Chris Dendys, RESULTS Canada, 613-808-3491; Kathleen Powderley, UNICEF Canada, 416-803-5597; Tiffany Baggetta, World Vision Canada, 416-305-9612

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