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“Wholly untrue”: UNICEF slams weird and dangerous coronavirus advice

<div class="post_body_wrapper"> <div class="post_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>As coronavirus panic levels continue to heighten, fake tips on how to avoid catching the disease are circulating wildly on social media.</p> <p>Social media platforms are full of advice on how to avoid catching coronavirus, but many of them are untrue.</p> <p>Humanitarian organisation UNICEF was forced to issue a statement after the organisation was linked to advice urging people to stop eating ice cream.</p> <p>“A recent erroneous online message circulating in several languages around the world and purporting to be a UNICEF communication appears to indicate, among other things, that avoiding ice cream and other cold foods can help prevent the onset of the disease. This is, of course, wholly untrue,” the organisation slammed in a<span> </span><a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="" target="_blank">statement</a>.</p> <p>“To the creators of such falsehoods, we offer a simple message: STOP. Sharing inaccurate information and attempting to imbue it with authority by misappropriating the names of those in a position of trust is dangerous and wrong.</p> <p>“To members of the public, we ask that you seek accurate information about how to keep yourself and your family safe from verified sources, such as UNICEF or WHO, government health officials and trusted healthcare professionals; and that you refrain from sharing information from untrustworthy or unverified sources.”</p> <p>The organisation also urged people to avoid sharing information from untrustworthy sources.</p> <p>“It can be difficult in today’s information-rich society to know exactly where to go for knowledge about how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe,” UNICEF partnerships deputy executive director Charlotte Petri Gornitzka said.</p> <p>“But it is critical that we remain as diligent about the accuracy of the information we share as we are about every other precaution we take to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.”</p> <p>Other odd tips that have gone viral include advising people to keep their mouth and throat moist so that “even if the virus gets into your mouth, drinking water and other liquids will wash them down your oesophagus and into the stomach” as well as keeping your indoor temperature above 20c so that coronavirus doesn’t spread any further.</p> </div> </div> </div>


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Charitable gifts to give this festive season

<p>Christmas is the time for giving and while there’s an indescribably joy in giving to our loved ones, it’s also a time to give to those who are less fortunate. According to a survey by Oxfam almost 90 per cent of Australians either give away or sell unwanted presents so Oxfam are urging everyone to consider giving a charitable gift this Christmas. Here are some ideas to get you started but remember there are many charities around – find an issue you know your giftee is passionate about for a truly amazing gift that just keeps on giving.</p><p><strong>Fairtrade gifts</strong></p><p>Many charities have a number of gifts to purchase for the festive season. Oxfam stores (and online) sell unique handcrafted goods made by people from developing countries. Check out their website <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.&nbsp;</p><p>For the animal lover in your life, a gift from World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in exchange for a donation to support WWF’s worldwide conservation efforts is a different but unique gift. Find out more <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.&nbsp;</p><p>Many other charities are selling gifts this Christmas which will help them raise much needed funds for their organisations.</p><p>Alternatively, pick up some vintage treasures at your local Vinnes or Salvos stores. A trawl through the bric-and-brac will uncover some interesting finds and you know the money is going to a good cause.</p><p><strong>A life-changing gift</strong></p><p>Help those in needs by providing education, clean water and other life-changing essential by giving the gift of a goat, a bunch of carrots, a bicycle and many more.</p><p>There are many different presents to purchase from charities like Oxfam’s 'Unwrapped Gifts' section. Giving the gift of a chicken will “provides families in South Africa with an income, eggs and the ability to breed more chicken’s just makes it even better. It’s a little gift that will change a lot.” Your giftee will receive a clever card (expect some puns) detailing their gift and you’ll still have something to give come Christmas day. Find more <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.&nbsp;</p><p>UNICEF Australia also have a range of charity gifts to help children in poverty. Whether it’s the gift of polio vaccines, footballs or bicycles, it’s a little gift that will change a lot to a child in need. Check their website <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.</p><p>For those wanting to make an impact closer to home, help out The Smith Family with one of their gifts to Aussie children. It could be sponsoring a child for one term or a school essentials pack. Head to their website <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.&nbsp;</p><p>Other charitable organisation such as <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Care</strong></span></a>, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>World Vision</strong></span></a>, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>RSPCA</strong> </span></a>and many others offer similar joy-spreading gifts.</p><p><strong>Wishing Tree Appeal</strong></p><p>It’s become a Christmas tradition for many Aussies to donate a gift to the less fortunate at one of Kmart’s wishing trees. Working with The Salvation Army, the Wishing Tree Appeal aims to collect more than 500,000 gifts for people in need across Australia and New Zealand in 2014. Help them make it possible so Christmas can be brighter for the thousands of Aussies who have fallen on hard times. Find where to donate <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Charitable cards</strong></p><p>A simple option to give this Christmas is to purchase charity Christmas cards. We all need cards to go with the presents so why not make it one you know will be going to a good cause. There are many out there supporting great charities so find one that you are passionate about.</p><p>If you can’t pop out to the store, you can order online from websites like <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Auscard</strong> </span></a>with the money from the cards supporting The McGrath Foundation, The Cancer Council and the Children’s Hospital in your state.&nbsp;</p>

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