Fill out the brief form below for access to the free report.
African First Ladies and the Fight Against Women’s Cancers: Iron Sharpening Iron
On September 26, 2012 ten current and former African First Ladies joined Former First Lady Laura Bush and Cherie Blair, wife of the former U.K. Prime Minister, at the 2012 RAND African First Ladies Initiative Annual Meeting in New York City. The forum supported the First Ladies on their collective quest to become even more effective leaders for their nations and continent. Throughout the meeting, the First Ladies discussed shared goals, common challenges and best strategies for creating partnerships and aligning visions with initiatives in-country. The day’s conversations were designed to help the First Ladies become champions of change in their home countries on issues such as women's health, girls' education and women's economic empowerment. I was invited to facilitate conversations around women’s health, specifically breast and cervical cancer control and the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon initiative. Not surprisingly, given the increased burden of cancers on women in Africa, I heard from several first ladies on their desire to lead the fight against women’s cancers in their countries. One particular story stood out. Following the Stop Cervical Cancer in Africa Conference in Lusaka, Zambia in July 2012, H.E. Mrs. Penehupifo Pohamba, first lady of Namibia and chair of the Organization of African First Ladies Against AIDS, sought out advice on cervical cancer control from H.E. Dr. Christine Kaseba, first lady of Zambia. Mrs. Pohamba has advocated for a variety of public health campaigns in Namibia, and knows all too well the challenges tied to mounting a successful national effort around women’s health. Dr. Kaseba has been an influential advocate for Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon and women’s cancer control in Zambia and has helped lead Zambia to the forefront in cervical and breast cancer control on the continent. Mrs. Pohamba indicated that to deal effectively with the frightening burden of cervical cancer, Namibia urgently needs the one-visit approach currently promoted in Zambia and asked for guidance from Dr. Kaseba and whether Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon could assist. It was inspiring to listen to Dr. Kaseba share with Mrs. Pohamba her experience of successfully driving forward cancer control efforts in Zambia. On a similar note, appeals were made to PRRR for immediate support by H.E. Mrs. Chantal Boni Yayi of Benin, the Tanzanian Ambassador to the United States, and the representatives of the first ladies of Senegal and Mozambique. The other first ladies participating in the RAND conference included H.Es. Salma Kikwete of Tanzania, Traore Mintou Doucoure of Mali, Antoinette Sassou N'Guesso of the Republic of Congo, Hadidja Ikililou of Comoros, Jeannette Kagame of Rwanda, and Chantal Campaoré of Burkina Faso; as well as the former first lady of Malawi, Callista Mutharika, and the wife of the Vice President of Nigeria, Hajiya Amina Namadi Sambo. Mrs. Bush lauded the First Ladies’ efforts, concluding that “more children in your countries are in school, families are learning to lead healthier lives, and communities are benefiting with more citizens in the workforce." Mrs. Bush said, “Because you care, you know there’s much more work to be done.” Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon looks forward to working with the First Ladies as they reach their potential as leaders and mothers of their nations, and take specific steps alongside development partners to improve the lives of their constituents. ABOUT PINK RIBBON RED RIBBON The George W. Bush Institute, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), Susan G. Komen for the Cure® and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS introduced a new initiative to expand the availability of vital cervical and breast cancer screening and treatment for women at risk in developing nations in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon corporate partners include BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), Bristol-Myers Squibb, Caris Foundation, GlaxoSmithKline, IBM, Merck and QIAGEN.
This post was written by Doyin Oluwole, MD, FRCP, the founding Executive Director of Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, based at the George W. Bush Institute.
14 Things to Know About the Life-Saving Work of PEPFAR on its 14th Anniversary
This weekend marks the 14th anniversary of PEPFAR, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, which President George W. Bush signed into law on May 27, 2003 as part of the United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Act of 2003. Since then PEPFAR has saved nearly 12 million lives. Here’s a look at 14 interesting facts about PEPFAR, which has lead the progress in the global campaign to end AIDS. In 2003, at the signing of the PEPFAR legislation, less than 50,000 people in sub-Saharan Africa were on antiretroviral treatment (ART) for HIV/AIDS, now 11.5 million individuals are on ART due to PEPFAR. 99.5 percent of HIV-positive pregnant women are receiving ART, a more than 40 percent increase since the beginning of 2014. This has led to nearly 2 million babies being born HIV-free to infected mothers. Since the start of PEPFAR, new HIV Infections have declined 51 to 76 percent. Voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) can reduce men&rs
President and Mrs. Bush's Visit to Namibia and Botswana in Photos
They delivered a message to Congress and all Americans: lives in Africa matter.
Building on America’s Leadership in Global Health
The new administration should stay the course as a strong leader in global health. This is a bipartisan effort, as both sides of the aisle have agreed on the importance of health care investments through successive Congresses and administrations, reflecting the priorities of the American people.
7 Things to Know about PEPFAR on World AIDS Day
Today marks World AIDS Day: a day to honor those lost, celebrate the global progress made in the fight against AIDS, and commit to put an end to the disease. In 2003, at the signing ceremony for the legislation that enacted the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), President George W. Bush said, “We believe in the value and dignity of every human life. In the face of preventable death and suffering, we have a moral duty to act, and we are acting.” Since then, PEPFAR has delivered life-saving antiretroviral treatment (ART) to 11.5 million people, and nearly 2 million babies have been born HIV-free with PEPFAR support. PEPFAR’s success contributes to a coordinated global effort to end AIDS. UNAIDS reports that since 2000, 18.2 million people have access to treatment for HIV, new infections of HIV have decreased by over 1 million infections, and AIDS-related deaths have decreased by 1.4 million. There is real hope for endin