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New partnership to increase funding for Africa's finght against AIDS

afrol News, 13 March - Line beneficiaries of the (RED) money in Lesotho, Swaziland, Rwanda and Ghana are to get more funding from a new fundraising partnership announced yesterday between the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and Gap Inc.

Under the new partnership, the Global Fund, through Gap's "Give & Get" programme will get additional funding that builds upon the existing relationship through (PRODUCT)RED which is designed to help raise additional funds for the Fund's live-saving efforts in Africa.

The Global Fund has a long-standing relationship with Gap Inc., through the (PRODUCT)RED relationship and last year's "Give & Get" promotions. As a result of last year's "Give & Get" promotions, the Global Fund received over a half million dollars which is equivalent to providing more than 3,100 HIV positive people in Africa with lifesaving antiretroviral treatment for one year. The Global Fund will use the funds raised through the 2008 and 2009 "Give & Get" promotions to support its large-scale prevention and treatment programmes to fight AIDS in (RED) grant countries in Africa.

"AIDS is one of the world's most devastating diseases and yet it is preventable and treatable if the right resources exist. Two-thirds of those living with HIV are in Sub-Saharan Africa where many countries still struggle to mobilise the funds needed to address the epidemic," says David Evans, Head of Private Sector Partnerships at the Global Fund.

"100 percent of the money that Gap has invested in the Global Fund through the "Give and Get" promotions and the sale of (PRODUCT)RED items goes directly to grants in Africa that support large-scale, comprehensive national AIDS programmes that provide a range of services including the provision of antiretroviral treatment for those living with HIV," he added.

The Global Fund is one of the six organisations that Gap Inc. will partner with during its upcoming "Give & Get" promotion. For four days in March, Gap Inc. will provide its employees and a group of select customers with a 30 percent discount. Gap Inc. will donate 5 percent of the total "Give & Get" sales to the six organisations, with customers and employees deciding which organisation they would like to support. The company said the discount can be shared with friends and family so that their purchases during the promotion will further support the selected organisation.

Launched in 2008, the programme has to date raised $4.3 million for partners.

"The Global Fund effectively answers a critical healthcare need on a global level, all of us at Gap Inc. are so grateful for their efforts and care they are providing to families in Africa," said Bobbi Silten, Gap Foundation's Chief Foundation Officer.

In addition to its "Give & Get" campaigns, Gap Inc. is a global partner of (PRODUCT)RED, and contributes half the profits from Gap (PRODUCT)RED sales to The Global Fund, to help finance AIDS programmes in Africa, with a focus on the health of women and children.

Since its creation in 2002, the Global Fund has become the dominant financer of programmes to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, with approved funding of US $15 billion for programmes in 140 countries.

(RED)'s primary objective is to engage the private sector in raising awareness and funds for the Global Fund, to help eliminate AIDS in Africa. Companies whose products take on the (PRODUCT)RED mark contribute a significant percentage of the sales or portion of the profits from that product to the Global Fund to finance AIDS programmes in Africa, with an emphasis on the health of women and children. Current partners are: American Express (U.K. only), Apple, Converse, Gap, Emporio Armani, Hallmark, Dell, Windows and Starbucks. Since its launch in the Spring of 2006, more than $120 million has been generated by (RED) for the Global Fund.

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