Alwaleed Foundation backs vaccine summit
Riyadh, April 28, 2013
Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation-Global, chaired by Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, has signed an agreement with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation co-chaired by Bill Gates to bolster the Global Polio Eradication Initiative.
The Lebanon-registered Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation has pledged $30 million for the initiative.
The organisation had earlier supported the first Global Vaccine Summit in Abu Dhabi, which was held in partnership with General Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and in partnership with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Bill Gates.
The summit was attended by Prince Alwaleed along with global leaders, health and development experts, philanthropists, and business leaders.
Prince Alwaleed acknowledged the unique partnership between the Alwaleed Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with the aim of ending polio through the Global Polio Eradication Initiative.
He said the humanity and nobility of the cause should be supported by all as the polio eradication drive is aimed at reaching countries where challenges and opposing views of vaccination remain.
During the summit, Gates endorsed the critical role that vaccines and immunization play in saving lives and protecting children for life. It aims to turn a spotlight on the importance of building and maintaining powerful routine immunization systems to keep all children healthy, no matter where they live.
Gates acknowledged the role of the donors, global leaders and partners who have demonstrated their support for the initiative and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018, the first comprehensive plan to lay out all the critical elements needed to achieve eradication.
Ending polio is a milestone in the global roadmap to save more than 20 million lives by 2020.
"We are thrilled that along with Prince Alwaleed, we have Michael Bloomberg, and Carlos Slim from Mexico, Carl Icahn, and major philanthropists who have joined us," said an elated Gates.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people’s health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty.-TradeArabia News Service