Bono: “Merci, Canada”

Pledges to Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria are expected to save 8 million more lives

MONTREAL — World leaders came together this weekend to make the largest multilateral commitment to a global health project in history, raising nearly US$13 billion for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. The Global Fund is a public-private partnership that pools the world’s resources to strategically invest in programs to end three epidemics. It is credited with saving 20 million lives to date.

Bono, the lead singer of U2 and the co-founder of The ONE Campaign and (RED), said:

“In an era of strained budgets and growing isolationism in some quarters, world leaders have come together to make the single largest multilateral investment in a global health project in human history. We can deliver a knock-out punch to 3 of the deadliest killers of our time, and today’s accomplishment makes that possible. There is surely more work to do, we have to keep at it, but today is a good day.”

“Prime Minister Trudeau – he and the Canadian people- have worked harder to make sure the Global Fund was successfully replenished than any host I’ve ever seen. Canada has my respect and my gratitude, and the thanks of the millions whose lives will be saved because of what was accomplished here in Montreal today. Merci, Canada.”

The world has made remarkable progress in the fights against these deadly diseases over the last 15 years, in large part because of the Global Fund. Deaths from the three diseases have fallen by more than one-third in the countries where the Global Fund invests. The Global Fund’s support — along with other donors, the private sector, and the investments made by countries themselves — has saved 20 million lives to date. The pledges made at this weekend’s replenishment conference in Montreal are expected to save an additional 8 million lives.

AIDS-related illnesses are now the leading cause of death for women aged 15 to 44 on the planet, and nearly 17,000 women of all ages are infected with HIV every week. In sub-Saharan Africa, young women are twice as likely as young men to be infected with HIV, and 850 young women contract it every day. ONE released a report in March detailing these and other ways that poverty is sexist.

The ONE Campaign is a policy and advocacy organization of more than 7.5 million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. Not politically partisan, it raises public awareness and presses political leaders to combat AIDS and other preventable diseases, increase investments in agriculture and nutrition, and demand greater transparency from governments and poverty-fighting programs.

ONE has offices in Ottawa, Washington, London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels, Abuja, and Johannesburg.

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