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On September 20 to 21, President George W. Bush and Mrs. Laura Bush hosted the Global Women’s Network: A Summit of Ideas, Innovation and Partnerships at the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas, Texas. The event brought together First Ladies, private and public sector leaders, and the next generation of innovators to showcase effective solutions to increase access for women and girls to education, health, and economic stability.
Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon hosted dignitaries and partners from our countries of engagement, and many of our implementing partners and members of our Steering Committee attended as well.
The success of the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon partnership, one of the George W. Bush Institute’s flagship programs, was one of the highlights of a main-stage plenary entitled, “The Power of Public Private Partnerships: Collaborating to Improve the Lives of Women and Girls.” John Damonti, President of the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, and Joyce, a nurse from Livingstone Central Hospital in the Republic of Zambia, represented Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon on the panel.
Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon was also central to a break-out salon session called, “Healthy Women, Healthy Nations: Saving Lives through Technology Advancements.” Diana Kisaka, Managing Director of T-MARC Tanzania, spoke of her organization’s work through Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon to raise awareness of cervical and breast cancer, and transport women with advanced cervical cancer for treatment.
Marking a new chapter for the partnership, President Bush announced that Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon is now an autonomous, non-profit organization that will have greater flexibility to expand, to make grants, and to raise funds around the world. President Bush described the change this way: “Although the structure of the organization will change, its mission will not. Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon will continue leading coordinated action with partners around the world to save women’s lives from cancer, so that they can support their families and strengthen their communities.”
Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon will maintain its affiliation with the Bush Institute while operating as an independent organization, which will increase its capacity for partnerships and potential for life-saving impact. President Bush and Mrs. Laura Bush are committed to Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon’s mission, vested in its success, and will remain involved in the organization as it grows.
To commemorate this new journey, Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon has updated its logo, and is refreshing its messaging to better convey its mission, and impact.
Following President Bush’s remarks, Ambassador Deborah Birx, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and U.S. Special Representative for Global Health Diplomacy, announced an additional $7 million dollars in funding from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), “to continue the great work of the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon partnership, and to expand to new countries.” She called the contribution “a testament to the strength and applicability of this partnership model.”
Founded four short years ago, in September 2011, by the George W. Bush Institute, PEPFAR, Susan G. Komen, and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon today boasts over 22 member organizations. The current country portfolio includes Botswana, Ethiopia, Namibia, Tanzania and Zambia, and the partnership is considering expanding to additional countries in 2016. From its inception, Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon partners have rapidly scaled-up in-country activities for the prevention and treatment of cervical cancer, having screened almost 200,000 women for cervical cancer, and more than 6,000 women for breast cancer.
Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon is poised for growth. With the leadership of President and Mrs. Bush and investors like PEPFAR, we are looking forward to a future of continued success in leading coordinated action to save women’s lives from cancer, to enable them and their communities to thrive.
Crystal Cazier is the Assistant for Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon. This blog originally appeared on the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon website.
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