UNICEF launches major vaccination program in India

The United Nations Children's Fund recently launched a year-long vaccination campaign in India to raise awareness about the need for routine and anti-polio vaccinations.

The plantation program, known as "Nurturing Trees, Nurturing Lives," was launched on the first anniversary of India being removed from the list of polio-endemic countries. It emphasizes that every child in the country should still be vaccinated against the crippling illness, as well as other dangerous childhood maladies, according to

"On this day last year, India was removed from the polio endemic countries list by the World Health Organization," Unicef Representative to India Louis-Georges Arsenault said, reports. "If we could stop polio, we can surely also prevent other life threatening diseases in children such as measles, Hepatitis-B, diphtheria."

The campaign was publicly launched by the famous cricketer Suresh Raina. It will utilize volunteers from the Indian National Service Scheme and school students from more than 500 institutions. The volunteers have also pledged to plant approximately 36,000 saplings in an effort to raise awareness according to

"Vaccination is important for a child for a healthy life. The youth has the potential to bring about a huge change. Their individual efforts will together make a big impact and help save lives of children," Raina said, reports.