What does it take to get a lifesaving vaccine to the children who need it most? To coincide with immunisation week, globe trotting UNICEF ambassador Ewan McGregor has made a documentary telling the stories of the remarkable journeys getting these precious vaccines to some of the most inaccessible places in the world.
The term ‘cold chain’ refers to the fact that these vaccines need to be kept at between 2 and 8 degrees centigrade, a feat made all the more difficult by the high temperatures and difficult terrain.
Thanks to vaccines like these supported by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) between 2000 and 2005 5.4 million child deaths have been averted. This is a dramatic example of the impact smart aid can have.
If you’re in the UK you can watch part one of Ewan McGregor’s Cold Chain Mission on the BBC website, where he follows the journey of a vaccine from India to Nepal.
In part two (Sunday evening at 9pm on BBC 2) he travels along the Congo river. To accompany the programme UNICEF have produced an infographic of the route taken. You can also follow the story using the #coldchain hashtag on twitter.
International supporters can find out more facts and figures about vaccines on the ONE living proof website – which includes a film about the development of a rotavirus vaccine from creation to success in Nicaragua.