2020 is a vital year for the UK to continue to support the global institutions that do so much to overcome poverty and save lives. After its 2019 pledges of up to £1.4 billion to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, and £400 million to help rid the world of polio, the Government should carry on doing all it can to help achieve the goal of universal health coverage. In June, the UK will host a replenishment conference for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and in July, it has the chance to pledge renewed resources to overcome malnutrition.
Health is just one area where UK leadership is needed. Education is the cornerstone for sustainable development and it is vital for facing and fighting climate change, particularly for the most marginalised communities in the poorest countries. Yet education for all is at risk from climate change, and education is neglected as part of the global climate response. The UK Government should seize the opportunity it has in 2020, as host of the UN ‘Conference of the Parties’ (COP26), and as a world leader in global education, to take decisive action to stop climate change undermining the right to education, and strengthen education’s role in the global climate response.
With many new MPs coming into Parliament after the UK’s General Election on 12 December, now is the time to show that there is strong public support for leadership on the part of the new Government – whoever is elected – in tackling these urgent global concerns. Please arrange to visit your new or re-elected MP after the election, to explain the importance of the UK’s efforts to promote global health and education and to tackle climate change.