To mark Valentine’s Day 2019, advocates in the UK stood in solidarity with our global civil society allies and took part in an action to show our love and appreciation for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and to ask the UK government to be bold and ambitious at the forthcoming replenishment conference later this year. This action mirrored activities in over 45 countries where activists led their own campaigns directed towards Government Departments and Embassies to spread the #lovemoregivemore message.
With a red heart balloon in hand representatives from STOPAIDS (Jenny Vaughan), The ONE Campaign UK (Nasim Salad), Malaria No More UK (Charlotte Dixie) and RESULTS UK (Richard Blunt) went to deliver a letter to International Development Minister Alistair Burt at the UK Department for International Development which had also been signed by Frontline AIDS (who joined us in spirit).
Our letter commends the UK Government on the incredible leadership and commitment shown through the UK’s investment in the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. The UK’s contribution of £1.2billion over the last three years has delivered phenomenal results of which the UK can be very proud. Since its inception in 2002 the Global Fund has helped save over 27 million lives and it continues to build sustainable health systems, promote human rights, and advance gender equality every day. It is a powerful and effective force for good. You can find out how many lives your constituency has helped to save through taxpayer contributions using our constituency tool here.
But, as we point our in our letter, we need to step up the fight in 2019 in order to get back on track in the fight against AIDS, TB and malaria. If we don’t step up now, we will slip backwards and the goals global leaders have signed up to will be unattainable. The situation is serious: HIV is the leading global cause of early death among girls and women ages 15 – 49. A total of 37.6 million people now live with HIV, and there are 1.8 million new infections annually. We must therefore raise our level of ambition if we are to deliver on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, with only 11 years left on the clock.
Our allies at the Global Fund Advocates Network have calculated that in order to meet global need at least $16.8bn should spent through the Global Fund the next implementation cycle, making it all the more important that the Global Fund mobilises $14bn at the very least at the Sixth Replenishment, as set out in their investment case.
We have therefore called on the UK to be bold and ambitious with its pledge for the Sixth Replenishment, to increase its level of commitment in line with global need, and maintain its position as a global health leader by leading the way ensuring a fully funded Global Fund.
If you would like to know more about STOPAIDS Global Fund Replenishment work or join our civil society working group, please get in touch with Jenny Vaughan.