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Fashion Relief TV is back

  • Preen, Celine, Ganni and Alexander McQueen – Lorraine Keane’s Fashion Relief TV with Oxfam Ireland is back!

  • Designer pieces donated by Laura Whitmore, Caroline Downey and Lorraine Keane on sale this Friday on Fashion Relief TV

  • Fashion Relief TV to feature host of Irish labels like Aideen Bodkin, Louise Kennedy and Fee G

6 April 2021

This Friday, 9 April 2021, Lorraine Keane is back with Fashion Relief TV – her sustainable fashion fundraiser with Oxfam Ireland.

After a nationwide donation drive, the Fashion Relief team are springing back from a short break with rails packed full of pre-loved, brand-new and designer items that were donated by some of Ireland’s most fashionable women as well as Boutiques from across Ireland.

Broadcaster Lorraine Keane said: “Thanks to the generosity of donors we have created our very own little Fashion Relief circular economy – as long as people continue to donate fabulous items, we will continue to have fabulous bargains up for grabs.

Items up for grabs on Fashion Relief TV this week include:

  • Preen by THORNTON BREGAZZI: This red one-shoulder midi dress features an exposed zip back, cinched in waist and full skirt for a flattering and elegant silhouette. Original RRP: €1119 | Fashion Relief Price (FRP): €295
  • FRNCH Coat: FRNCH mid-length coat is designed in a gorgeous orange and white wool mix adding a smart tailored look to your spring look. Original RRP: €165 | FRP: €55
  • Louise Kennedy: Fabulous cobalt crepe dress with embellished detail. RRP Original €995 | FRP: €145
  • Vanessa Seward: This label is renowned for sleek, tailored pieces and this button down denim dress is no exception. Original RRP: €495 | FRP: €165
  • Ganni: Floral print gathered maxi dress by cool Danish brand Ganni. Donated by Lorraine Keane. Original RRP €295 | FRP: €110
  • A number of Lulu Guinness bags, donated by Laura Whitmore, and bags from Alexander McQueen, Thomas Wylde and Jimmy Choo, donated by Caroline and Storm Downey, will also be up for grabs on Friday’s show.

Keane continued: “When Covid hit, Fashion Relief pivoted to an always-on online platform with the tech knowhow of our incredible partners Axonista, so we could continue to offer our supporters amazing bargains with the added bonus of shopping more sustainably while also supporting Oxfam’s global work to beat poverty.

The show, which airs from Keane’s home on Friday evening at 7pm, will be packed full of brand-new and pre-loved donated clothes, shoes and accessories, as well as a host of designer labels like Preen, Celine, Ganni and Alexander McQueen, and much loved Irish labels like Aideen Bodkin, Louise Kennedy and Fee G.

Fashion Relief TV will air from Keane’s home at 7pm on Friday 9th April on www.fashionrelief.ie. After that, people can simply log on any time throughout the week to browse and pick up a bargain.

END

Contact 

Caroline Reid | caroline.reid@oxfam.org | +353 (0) 87 912 3165

Notes to the editor

  • Images for use available upon request
  • Founded in 2018 by Irish broadcaster, Lorraine Keane in partnership with Oxfam, Fashion Relief has become one of Ireland's biggest fashion fundraisers - that offers people the unique opportunity to bag a bargain from the wardrobe of their style icon or beloved brand, boutique or designer. Fashion Relief has since rolled out annual events in Dublin, Cork and Galway, and more recently it pivoted to an online interactive shopping platform – www.fashionrelief.ie.  Fashion Relief also part of Oxfam’s solution to ‘throwaway fashion’, encouraging people to donate pre-loved items rather than binning them. Retailers are also supported to donate their end-of-line or excess stock instead of sending it to landfill – a more sustainable solution for people and planet. 
  • All profits support Oxfam’s work in some of the world’s poorest countries, helping people to lift themselves out of poverty and thrive as well as saving lives when disaster strikes. Since its inception, Fashion Relief has raised nearly €270,000 for Oxfam’s work. 
  • Fashion Relief Donation Drive: Email aisling.wallace@oxfam.org to order your pre-paid and addressed Fashion Relief donation bag. People can donate up to 12 items at a time and once their donations are packaged up all they need to do is bring them to their local post office and they will be winging their way to the Fashion Relief team. 
  • Fashion Relief at Frascati Centre Blackrock: Lorraine Keane’s Fashion Relief with Oxfam will have a pop-up shop in the newly renovated Frascati Centre, Blackrock once Covid restrictions are lifted. The shop will boast rail after rail of brand-new and pre-loved donated clothes, shoes and accessories, offering a more sustainable way to shop, while also supporting Oxfam’s global work to beat poverty.
  • Oxfam is a global movement of people who won’t live with the injustice of poverty. Together they save lives and rebuild communities when disaster strikes. They help people build better lives for themselves. They speak out on the big issues that keep people poor, like inequality and discrimination against women. And they won’t stop until every person on the planet can live without poverty. Oxfam Ireland is one of 20 Oxfams working in over 90 countries worldwide. 
  • About Axonista: Axonista is the award-winning team behind Ediflo, an enterprise-level video technology platform that enables media companies and brands to build interactive video applications across all screens. Based in Dublin and New York, and employing a team of 30, this interactive video technology company helps their customers to tell stories in entirely new ways. Axonista’s technology powers some of the world’s most popular video streaming apps. Customers include QVC, Virgin Media, The Home Shopping Network, VideoElephant, WaterBear and the Irish Film Institute. Over a ten year history, Axonista has won numerous awards for its ground-breaking work in video, and was recently named one of the 250 most significant Irish Corporations invested in the US. For more information, visit www.axonista.com
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On the hunt for a designer bargain? Fashion Relief TV with Oxfam Ireland is back!

Tuesday 6 April 2021

Easter might be over, but that doesn’t mean the hunt for goodies has to be. Lorraine Keane is back with Fashion Relief TV, her sustainable fashion fundraiser with Oxfam Ireland, this Friday 9 April – and you’re guaranteed to find some fabulous bargains!

Earlier this year, Lorraine teamed up with broadcaster and fashion designer Brendan Courtney for a nationwide donation drive. Now, thanks to the generosity of some of Ireland’s most fashionable women, and boutiques from Dublin to Dingle, the Fashion Relief team is back with rails of pre-loved, brand-new and designer pieces.

The show, which airs on www.fashionrelief.ie on Friday from 7pm, will showcase designer labels like Preen, Celine, Ganni and Alexander McQueen, and much-loved Irish labels including Aideen Bodkin, Louise Kennedy and Fee G.

Here are just some of the fabulous items up for grabs on Fashion Relief TV this week:

FRNCH Coat: FRNCH mid-length coat is designed in a gorgeous orange and white wool mix adding a smart tailored look to your spring look. Original RRP: €165 | Fashion Relief Price (FRP): €55
Louise Kennedy: Fabulous cobalt crepe dress with embellished detail. RRP Original €995 | FRP: €145
Vanessa Seward: This label is renowned for sleek, tailored pieces and this button-down denim dress is no exception. Original RRP: €495 | FRP: €165
Ganni Newman: Floral print gathered maxi dress by cool Danish brand Ganni. Donated by Lorraine Keane. Original RRP €295 | FRP: €110

But that’s not all. Other items on the show include a Preen by Thornton Bregazzi dress which normally retails for €1,119 but has a FRP price of just €295! The show will also feature a number of Lulu Guinness bags, donated by Laura Whitmore, and bags from Alexander McQueen, Thomas Wylde and Jimmy Choo, donated by Caroline and Storm Downey.

“Thanks to the generosity of donors we have created our very own little Fashion Relief circular economy – as long as people continue to donate fabulous items, we will continue to have fabulous bargains up for grabs,” said Lorraine.

“When Covid hit, Fashion Relief pivoted to an always-on online platform with the tech knowhow of our incredible partners, Axonista, so we could continue to offer our supporters amazing bargains with the added bonus of shopping more sustainably while also supporting Oxfam’s global work to beat poverty."

Fashion Relief is part of Oxfam’s solution to ‘throwaway fashion’, encouraging people to donate pre-loved items and reduce the amount of clothes that end up in landfill as well as shopping second-hand to give pre-loved clothes a longer life. So, by bagging a bargain from Fashion Relief you’ll be shopping more sustainably and doing your bit for people and planet.

“I’ve seen first-hand how the profits raised by Fashion Relief help some of the poorest and most at risk people through Oxfam’s work. Even though things may have slowed down or come to a stop here, humanitarian crises are continuing, and in some cases worsening across the world,” Lorraine continued.

Just three weeks ago, a massive fire swept through the refugee camps of Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh. The fires left 10,000 families displaced and in urgent need of basics like food and water. Hundreds more were injured. This was yet another devastating blow to the Rohingya people who fled shocking violence and persecution in Myanmar. Oxfam continues to be able to support and respond to events like this because of the generous support of people across Ireland.

To celebrate the return of Fashion Relief TV, Lorraine also has an incredible giveaway lined up for one lucky winner. Check out her Instagram page @LorraineKeane for details on how to win a Loulerie necklace. She explained: “All people have to do to enter is RSVP for Fashion Relief TV via www.oxfamireland.org/fashionrelief, take a screen shot and post it to Instagram with the hashtag #FashionReliefTV to be in with a chance to win. People have until Friday at 6pm to enter.”

5 ways the World Bank can promote a fairer and faster global vaccine roll-out

29 March 2021
By Katie Malouf Bous, Oxfam International’s Senior Policy Advisor for Public Services and International Financial Institutions & Anna Marriott, Oxfam International’s Health Policy Manager.

While wealthy nations have been vaccinating their citizens at a rate of one person per second over the last month, the majority of developing countries have been unable to administer even a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Only three percent of people in these countries can hope to be vaccinated by mid-year, and only one fifth at best by the end of 2021.

Global efforts to improve access to vaccines through the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) COVAX facility have been welcome but far from enough. Developing countries remain at the back of the vaccine queue and pharmaceutical monopolies mean they are being shut out of the technology that would allow them to expand local manufacturing and produce more doses to scale up vaccination campaigns. This is the reality despite over $100 billion of taxpayers’ money being spent on vaccine research and development (R&D). 

This vaccine inequality is a moral stain. It is also a global public health risk — the longer it takes to vaccinate everyone, the more likely it is that vaccine-resistant variants will emerge and delay the world’s efforts to end this pandemic. And the economic impact of vaccine inequality is huge: the International Chamber of Commerce has put the global cost at $9 trillion, with half of this being absorbed by developing countries. The IMF has warned that income losses will be highest in developing nations because of unequal vaccine access.

In this context, the World Bank announced in October an envelope of $12 billion for developing countries to finance the purchase and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, aiming to support the vaccination of up to a billion people. This support is crucial. However, without addressing global vaccine supply constraints and high prices, weak healthcare systems, and pre-existing health inequalities, this will be an uphill battle. As the Bank’s vaccine projects move forward, we offer five recommendations for how it can support a fairer and quicker global vaccine roll-out including through its own program:

1. Countries should not be pushed further into debt to buy vaccines.
The Bank’s $12 billion program is urgently needed but follows its normal financing terms based on country income. Only the poorest countries at high risk of debt distress qualify for purely grants — otherwise low-income countries will get concessional loans or a mix of grants and loans, and middle-income countries will get market-rate loans. In order to pay for life-saving vaccines, countries are going further into debt at a time when they can least afford it. Stopping COVID-19 is a global public good that poor countries should not have to borrow for. Even before the pandemic 64 countries were spending more on debt repayments than on healthcare. Taking on more debt for vaccines could constrain countries’ ability to invest in their longer-term public healthcare systems to prevent and control future pandemics, and ensure health for all.

The Bank and its donors must urgently find ways to offer more debt-free financing to countries for the vaccine and for health care services. The accelerated IDA20 Replenishment process should be one important and timely vehicle to make commitments that address this pressing problem.

2. The Bank should push for structural solutions to low and unequal vaccine supply.
Our dependence on just a few pharmaceutical corporations who cannot make enough doses for everyone means that, even with the Bank’s financial support, countries are being charged far more than they can afford for far fewer doses than they need. At the price Uganda paid for the AstraZeneca vaccine ($7), it would cost more than double the country’s entire healthcare budget to vaccinate everyone. In this context the Bank’s $12 billion will be quickly used up on insufficient numbers of vaccines and with no spare change for roll-out. Moreover, unless supply constraints are tackled, people in developing countries will be waiting years without access.

The Bank should use its global voice and echo calls made by the WHO for urgently needed structural fixes including the waiving of intellectual property rules for COVID-19 vaccines, tests and treatments and the sharing of vaccine technology and know-how via the WHO’s COVID-19 Technology Access Pool (CTAP). Both are needed to unlock existing manufacturing capacity in developing countries and scale up production. The Bank can also play a major role in providing needed finance for more local R&D and manufacturing of vaccines and other medicines in the Global South to meet immediate and future pandemic and everyday essential health needs.

3. Vaccines should be free of charge and prioritised based on need.
At the national level, it is crucial that vaccine allocation plans are transparently published and demonstrate government commitment to ensuring vaccines go first to those who need them most, and not those with the deepest pockets or best connections. And, without exception, vaccines should be provided to people free of charge. These should be two non-negotiable requirements before Bank funding is signed off.

Oxfam’s research on the World Bank’s initial COVID-19 response found that ensuring free access to healthcare during the pandemic has been a major blind spot. We found that very few of the COVID emergency projects were addressing financial barriers to accessing healthcare, such as removing user fees for healthcare services. User fees lead to avoidable deaths, impoverishment and increased disease transmission. Even if it is the Bank’s intention for vaccines to be free, it should clearly and publicly state its expectation that vaccines should be free of charge, including in every project.

4. World Bank funds should be available for any safe and effective vaccine.
The Bank should also urgently get in step with the vaccine regulatory approval requirements used by the WHO and COVAX. As things stand, it has set the bar inexplicably high for which vaccines can be purchased with World Bank money, requiring approval from both the WHO and at least one stringent regulatory authority — all of which are based in rich countries. Developing countries that want — or indeed need — non-Western vaccines that are approved by WHO but are of little interest to rich country regulatory authorities, could be prevented from using Bank funds to buy them.

5. The vaccine roll-out must build up public healthcare systems for the future.
The COVID-19 crisis cannot be considered a short-term emergency. The support low- and middle-income countries receive from the Bank and other donors must go beyond short-term stop-gap measures, and address the underlying causes of weak, underfunded and inequitable healthcare systems, particularly overwhelmed workforces.

Oxfam’s research on the Bank’s initial COVID-19 response also found weaknesses in this area: two-thirds of projects lacked plans to increase the number of healthcare workers, despite huge shortages. In 70 percent of countries supported, the number of nurses per 10,000 people is below the WHO’s minimum recommended level, with 34 countries, like Malawi, not even halfway to meeting it. These healthcare workers will be crucial in a successful vaccine roll-out.

In its new assessment of country readiness for COVID-19 vaccines, the Bank has recognised this challenge, raising a red flag that “few countries are using the opportunity provided by the deployment of vaccines to strengthen healthcare systems and find long-lasting solutions for similar future challenges.” This assessment offers the Bank a clear directive to step up to the challenge and do all it can to support countries to build up their healthcare workforces and create more resilient and fair public health systems.

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MEDIA ADVISORY PEOPLE’S VACCINE

EU leaders should stop squabbling and overrule pharma monopolies to boost supply

 

24 March 2021

The EU Council meets tomorrow, Thursday 25 to discuss the European-wide scarcity of Covid-19 vaccines that is sparking a dispute between European countries and the UK. The People’s Vaccine Alliance, supported by world leaders and over 50 organisations worldwide, is campaigning to ensure that safe and effective vaccines are mass-produced for all people around the world as quickly as possible. It has spokespeople available for interview.

The spat between the EU and UK over vaccine shortages was predictable and avoidable. More lives are being put at risk with Covid-19 surging again across Europe. Depending upon just a handful of pharmaceutical companies to produce enough vaccines for the world was never going to work. Yet UK and EU leaders have failed to unlock the pharmaceutical monopolies which are artificially restricting supply and blocking other manufacturers from joining the effort. 

Last week the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen said “all options are on the table” to secure more vaccine supplies, including waiving intellectual property rights. Recent polling in Ireland, France, Germany and Italy shows public support for their governments in overruling pharma monopolies to ensure that safe and effective vaccines are mass produced. 

Overriding intellectual property rules and insisting companies transfer the vaccine blueprints to the World Health Organisation, in order to unlock production capacity around the world, must be top of the EU agenda. Covid-19 is an unprecedented health emergency and not the time to put the profit interests of a few huge pharma corporations ahead of saving lives. As one Paraguayan-Irish woman living in Cork said in the Examiner today: “This is not about “aid”, it is about solidarity and valuing human life.”

This dispute between rich countries does nothing to tackle the underlying cause of vaccine scarcity which is delaying the end to this pandemic. Even the UK – well ahead in its vaccine roll out – faces huge economic damage as its trading partners go largely unvaccinated and the risk of more vaccine-tolerant mutations emerge. People across Europe are suffering and dying due to lack of supply – so too are millions of people in developing countries, most of which are yet to administer a single dose. The root of this problem is the same: too little supply because of pharmaceutical monopolies. Indeed, shortages in Europe and the UK now mean they are tapping into already scarce vaccine supplies meant for poorer countries from the Serum Institute in India. 

Instead of squabbling with each other, the EU and UK should support developing countries in over-riding big pharma’s monopoly control over the vaccines and unlocking more supplies for Europe and the world. They can do this by backing the TRIPs waiver at the WTO – which is supported by over a hundred countries - and by supporting the transfer of vaccine technology through the WHO’s Covid Technology Access Pool (C-TAP). More manufacturers are coming forward by the day from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Senegal, Denmark and Canada with offers to make vaccines but are now blocked from doing so. 

PEOPLE’S VACCINE ALLIANCE SPOKESPEOPLE: 

Jim Clarken, Oxfam Ireland Chief Executive 
Anna Marriot, Oxfam Health Policy Manager 
Dr Mohga Kamal Yanni, Global Health Expert and Senior Health Policy Advisor to The People Vaccine Alliance. 
Max Lawson, Oxfam Head of Inequality Policy. 
Jeroen Kwakkenbos, Oxfam Senior Aid Policy & Development Finance Advisor. 
Peter Kamalingan, Oxfam Pan Africa Programme Director.


Visit People's Vaccine Alliance: https://peoplesvaccine.org/ 

Contact
Caroline Reid | caroline.reid@oxfam.org | 087 912 3165 

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Yemen, six years of war

Yemen at tipping point: Increasing Covid cases amid renewed fighting and famine fears – Oxfam

  • Yemen’s aid programme remains more than 50 percent underfunded

24 March 2021

Evidence is mounting that a second wave of Covid-19 is already underway in Yemen, Oxfam warned today, with a 22-fold increase in recorded cases in recent weeks. It comes at a time of renewed fears that hundreds of thousands of people will be forced to flee to safety amid intense fighting in Marib governorate.

After six years of war, the UN has warned again that Yemen faces the worst famine the world has witnessed for decades.

In addition, the arrival of the rainy season - due in May - is expected to bring an increasing threat of cholera outbreaks, which combined with Covid will overwhelm a health system battered by years of war and economic collapse. Despite this huge level of need, Yemen’s aid programme remains more than 50 percent underfunded.

Muhsin Siddiquey, Oxfam’s Country Director in Yemen said: “Yemen is at a tipping point – millions of people are already teetering at the edge of a precipice, now Covid, cholera and an intensification of the conflict threatens to push them over.

“With little testing, we can’t quantify the true scale of the problem, but we do know that Covid is accelerating fast. I’m hearing daily of fresh tragedies – people who have died of Covid-like symptoms without receiving medical attention.”

The escalation in hostilities around Marib, where a number of Covid cases have been reported recently, is one of a number of worrying developments as the war in Yemen enters its seventh year.  Renewed fighting around Taiz, Hajjah, Hudaydah and Aldhale’e which have seen multiple airstrikes and renewed tensions in Aden and have brought fresh misery to those cities.

Since February, more than 11,000 people in Marib have been displaced, with some entire camps forced to evacuate. Many have been displaced four or five times now as the frontlines of Yemen’s war continue to shift.

Siddiquey continued: “People in Marib are desperate, they face a stark choice between staying put and risking their families lives or fleeing into the desert where there is no water or food.

“I’m hearing terrible reports of children being killed, houses in residential districts being hit and people being forced to flee.”  

Oxfam said it was concerned that by forcing people to flee, the recent surge in fighting will speed the spread of the virus around the country.

Jim Clarken, Chief Executive of Oxfam Ireland said: "Official figures on Covid in Yemen show a mortality rate of nearly 22 percent - one of the highest in the world. But with little testing and widespread reports of illness and deaths, the actual death toll is undoubtedly far higher. Yemen’s health system is estimated to be operating at half of its pre-war capacity despite the increasing needs.

"The people of Yemen are also facing the looming threat of cholera, while the UN humanitarian chief, Mark Lowcock, warned last week that the country is 'speeding towards a massive famine'.

"Earlier this month the UN held a donor pledging conference asking for $3.85 billion but received less than $1.7 billion - despite IPC projections that over 2.25 million Yemeni children under the age of five will suffer from acute malnutrition this year alone. We, the international community, must do everything in our power to support the people of Yemen now, before further lives are needlessly lost.

Siddiquey, concluded: ““Even people who escape the missiles and bullets face a daily struggle to survive in the face of disease and destitution. Yemenis have suffered for six long years – it is time for the world to say, enough.

“This is a man-made conflict and these deaths are avoidable. With efforts from the UN Envoy and a recommitment to peace from the new US administration, the international community must seize this moment to collectively pressure all sides to end the suffering. Peace is possible if governments put lives ahead of politics.”

END

Contact

Caroline Reid | Communications Manager | caroline.reid@oxfam.org

Notes for editors

 

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