President's Message: April 2012
2012 is a year of change and positive momentum for the Foundation. After eight years of groundbreaking HIV prevention and treatment work in five countries in sub-Saharan Africa through Project HEART, we celebrated the end of that historic program, as well as the launch of three recently-established affiliate organizations. The Foundation has also taken a leadership role in implementing the UN-endorsed Global Plan Towards the Elimination of New HIV Infections Among Children by 2015 and Keeping Their Mothers Alive
(the “Global Plan”). And we have applauded and lent our strong support to the launch of the Business Leadership Council (BLC) for a Generation Born Free of HIV
, which will bring needed private sector backing to national and global efforts to eliminate pediatric AIDS.
A key legacy of Project Heart is the successful transition of five of our country programs – Côte d’Ivoire, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zambia – to local affiliates and organizations. In three of these countries – Côte d’Ivoire, Mozambique, and Tanzania – these new organizations are now Affiliates supported by the Foundation. Project Heart, funded by CDC through PEPFAR, surpassed all early targets for success. Through visits to each of these countries, I witnessed first-hand the scope and impact of this initiative: more than one million men, women, and children received HIV care and support; more than half a million people were started on ART, and by 2010, one of every 10 PEPFAR-supported ART patients in sub-Saharan Africa received their treatment through Project HEART. These are just a small number of examples of the tremendous and lifesaving difference EGPAF and our partners has made.
We recently released a program brief
documenting the successes and lessons learned from the Project Heart transition process; you can download the brief at the link above. Also, I invite you to learn more about our local partners and the critical work they are doing by visiting their new websites at the links below.
• Fondation Ariel Glaser pour la Lutte Contre le SIDA Pediatrique (Côte d’Ivoire)
• Fundação Ariel Glaser contra o SIDA Pediátrico (Mozambique)
• Ariel Glaser Pediatric AIDS Healthcare Initiative (Tanzania)
At the Project Heart closeout event in Washington, D.C., in February, we heard moving testimony from Project HEART beneficiaries, including Kevin Kouassi from Côte d’Ivoire. Project HEART not only saved his life by providing antiretroviral therapy, it empowered him with knowledge and training as an HIV counselor. We also premiered our Telly Award-winning Project HEART video
to wide acclaim.
As one of the organizations responsible for drafting the Global Plan Towards Eliminating Pediatric AIDS referenced above, we have now taken a leadership role on the Global Steering Group (GSG), the plan’s built-in accountability mechanism. Along with Caritas Internationalis and the International Council of Women, the Foundation is co-chairing a GSG working group focused on country-led implementation of the plan, helping to identify and address key obstacles and opportunities for action at the country level. The GSG has hired a Director, Dr. Nicolas Muraguri, who previously served as Director of the National AIDS and STI Control Program for the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation in Kenya. Dr. Muraguri will be housed in our Nairobi offices, and I am confident that he will bring strong leadership and greater focus to ongoing efforts to eliminate pediatric AIDS.
Finally, we are pleased to lend our strong support to a new global organization, the Business Leadership Council (BLC) for a Generation Born Free of HIV.
The Business Leadership Council (BLC), which launched in January at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, represents the private sector’s engagement with the Global Plan, and is currently ramping up its efforts to raise worldwide awareness of mother-to-child transmission of HIV – and to create an AIDS-free generation by 2015. The BLC is comprised of representatives from diverse industries and countries that have formed to promote and garner support for The Global Plan and to define priority needs for private sector investment. They will be leading a much-needed public awareness campaign to bring increased political commitment and monetary muscle to this fight.
As always, I take immense pride in our efforts. Lives are being saved, and futures are being changed for the better – all because we are committed to finishing the work Elizabeth Glaser began almost 25 years ago. Looking ahead to the AIDS 2012 Conference in Washington, D.C.
this July, the momentum toward ending pediatric AIDS is building by the day. One mother’s fight has become our global mission – and as always, we are honored by your continued support.
To learn more about how you can help us carry on the mission Elizabeth Glaser started, visit www.amothersfight.org